Polish Minister of Agriculture resigns amid crisis with Ukrainian grain imports
Henryk Kowalczyk (Photo: EPA)

The Minister of Agriculture of Poland, Henryk Kowalczyk, resigned after unsuccessful attempts to resolve the crisis with a surplus of Ukrainian grain on the Polish market, Wprost writes.

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"I have already decided. I resigned from the position of the Minister of Agriculture, realizing that the main demands of farmers will not be fulfilled by the European Union," the newspaper quoted the minister as saying.

Earlier, Polish farmers broke the agreement with the government and again announced protests in several Polish cities, demanding stronger measures to overcome the crisis.

The agreement contained 11 restrictive measures for the import of Ukrainian grain.

Since February, Polish farmers began to block checkpoints on the Polish-Ukrainian border, protesting against the uncontrolled flow of grain and other agricultural products from Ukraine, which, instead of transiting further to other countries, remained in Poland and disrupted the market balance.

The Polish government even had to announce a program of state subsidies to farmers who are experiencing difficulties with the sale of agricultural products due to the influx of cheaper Ukrainian grain into the country.

At the beginning of March, Ukraine and Poland agreed on new rules for the transit of Ukrainian grain through Polish territory, which simplify the export of agricultural products and minimize the impact of cheaper grain on the Polish domestic market.

However, according to Polish farmers, these measures did not change the situation and the protests continued.

Kowalczyk assumed the position of Minister of Agriculture in October 2021.

Robert Telus, the chairman of the parliamentary commission on agriculture, is most often mentioned among the possible successors of Kowalczyk. The new minister will be appointed for a six-month term with the possibility of extending his mandate.