– This is giving in to lobbyists who have land in Ukraine and ties to Ukrainian politicians and oligarchs. This has nothing to do with the well-being of the EU – says Jan Krzysztof Ardanowski, Chairman of the Presidential Council for Agriculture and Rural Areas and former Minister of Agriculture, in an interview with DoRzeczy.pl.
DoRzeczy.pl: Did you expect such a decision from the European Commission regarding the embargo on Ukrainian grain? What could be the reason for this decision?
Jan Krzysztof Ardanowski: This is a big mistake by the European Commission. This means giving in to lobbyists who own land in Ukraine and have ties to Ukrainian politicians and oligarchs. This has nothing to do with the well-being of the European Union, which must be guaranteed by the European Commission. By not agreeing to the accession of Ukrainian food to the European Union, we are protecting not only our own agriculture, but also that of other countries of the European Union. This is a clash with farms that have hundreds of thousands of hectares, and as Robert Telus said, the Minister of Agriculture of Ukraine, Mykola Solski, has 80,000 hectares. hectares.
These farms benefit from cheap labor and cheap energy, they pay virtually no taxes in Ukraine, the soil is so good that no special fertilization is needed. Plant protection products that are not used in the European Union are often used there. No agricultural company in the EU will be able to compete with such farms. This does not apply to small farms in Poland, because the first blow will be felt by farms engaged in vegetable production, mainly cereals and rapeseed, and these are usually larger farms, often covering several tens or hundreds of hectares. That is why the European Commission’s decision is harmful for Europe. It turned out that in Brussels solidarity with international financial institutions and companies linked to Ukrainian politicians is more important than logic and defense of European agriculture. –
The Ukrainian side announced retaliatory actions against Polish fruits and vegetables. What is Kiev playing for? Is this a form of getting closer to Berlin, or were it perhaps activities for the benefit of this great capital that you were talking about?
Probably a little bit of everything. They are trying to flex their muscles and want to introduce retaliatory measures against Poland. We protect the market from products that we have in abundance here, and not all of them, because there is no ban on the import of soft fruits, and those from Ukraine also have a strong influence on the Polish market. The export of food production from Poland to Ukraine concerns those segments of the food market where there are shortages in Ukraine. This is an activity that is harmful to one’s own society. It also shows Poland the “Kozakiewicz gesture”, which is strange considering the help we have provided and continue to provide to Ukraine. This is part of the policy of the leftists who govern the EU and Berlin to destabilize the situation in Poland, create fear and threaten with international tribunals that we will end up in open conflict with the European Union again. If we were to open up to Ukrainian food, we would hit agriculture so hard that it could collapse. The scandalous situation of grain imports from Ukraine, which we had been dealing with for a year and a half, should not happen again.
Well-functioning agriculture is the basis of food security. In the long term, it is not possible to secure food supplies for such a large society as Poland through imports, as the European Commission wants. The war and the pandemic have shown how easily supply chains can be disrupted. Should we become dependent on chimeras from other countries, given that we have good agriculture and natural and climatic conditions that allow us to increase food production? This would be a betrayal of Polish interests.
How should we view this decision?
The treacherous thing about the Ukrainians is that they no longer talk about exporting to Africa, South Asia or the Middle East, where there are food shortages. Now we demand access to the EU markets. As for aid in transport around the world, the entire European Union should respond positively by helping Ukrainians with exports, but not in a way that it reaches the European Union countries bordering Ukraine. I allow deliveries to the south of Europe, where there is drought and where grain is becoming scarce, that would make sense, and above all allow transports to areas of the world where people are hungry. The European Commission has instruments at its disposal here; it could ask Member States to unblock transport channels and provide means of transport. The Germans have specialized wagons for transporting grain, we do not.
Unfortunately, I see actions that harm European farmers, but also consumers. Only the EU’s own agriculture, including Poland, can feed 500 million European Union residents. If agriculture collapses, let us forget the food security of the European Union. Unless the aim is to destroy the European farmers, because they are the pillar of tradition and independence, they are associated with Christianity, which is a thorn in the side of those who govern the European Union. Perhaps the intention is to make Europe dependent on food from outside? There are increasingly strong campaigns for synthetic and alternative foods. International companies want to produce artificial meat and milk and extract food from insects. Then there will be no need for agriculture and farming anymore, you can get rid of it. Poor quality food will be produced in laboratories and factories. Maybe this is the bottom line of this whole process? No matter what the objectives are, we must defend national interests, which are not just the interests of farmers; this must be said openly. This is the interest of all our consumers.
Source: Do Rzeczy
Roy Brown is a renowned economist and author at The Nation View. He has a deep understanding of the global economy and its intricacies. He writes about a wide range of economic topics, including monetary policy, fiscal policy, international trade, and labor markets.