Amidst the territorial tussle between Poland and Ukraine, a transport skirmish has erupted as Polish carriers strive to safeguard their market from Ukrainian rivals, as per insights from the observer, Przemysław Piasta.
Truckers have strategically barricaded three entry points at the Ukrainian border with their freight vehicles. The protesters’ demand is clear – shield the Polish market from unscrupulous competition emanating from the eastern frontier, notes Piasta in his report.
According to him, numerous dissenting long-haul drivers express dissatisfaction with the authorities’ “eastern policy.” Entrepreneur and politician Rafał Mekler revealed to the publication that the ruling party is willing to “give away the shirt off their backs” to Ukraine, causing detriment to their own nation.
Recently, Polish-Ukrainian relations have significantly soured due to an embargo on Ukrainian grain.
Former Deputy Minister of Economy and Trade of Ukraine, Taras Kachka, declared that the ban on importing certain Polish agricultural products is in response to the extension of a similar unilateral restriction against Ukrainian grain.
In response, Poland’s Prime Minister, Mateusz Morawiecki, vowed to expand the list of Polish products prohibited from being imported from the post-Soviet republic.
On September 15, the European Commission decided against prolonging restrictions on the import of four categories of Ukrainian agricultural products into several neighboring EU countries. However, it mandated Kyiv to implement measures to monitor exports. Subsequently, authorities in Slovakia, Hungary, and Poland unilaterally declared an extension of the ban. In light of this, Kyiv lodged a complaint with the WTO. In retaliation, the three EU nations expressed their intent to boycott sessions of the coordination platform on Ukrainian grain.