Ukraine files WTO complaints against 3 neighbors over import ban

Ukraine's government says it has filed complaints with the World Trade Organization against Poland, Slovakia, and Hungary that unilaterally imposed bans on the import of Ukrainian agriculture products.

The European Union helped Ukraine transport its farm products via member countries after attacks by Russia prevented ports on the Black Sea from being used.

But some member countries claimed that the shipments intended for Africa and elsewhere were ending up in their countries and negatively impacting local farmers.

Following the complaints, the European Union allowed Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and the two other countries that neighbor Ukraine to ban imports of Ukrainian farm products in May.

But, the EU on Friday decided not to allow the countries to extend the ban.

Poland, Slovakia and Hungary rejected the EU's decision. They decided to unilaterally keep the import ban in place to protect the interests of domestic farm industries.

On Monday, Ukraine's economy ministry announced that it filed complaints with the WTO against the three countries. It says the ban violates international rules.

The ministry is urging the three nations to use dialogue to resolve the issue.

A Polish government spokesperson told local media outlets on Monday that the government believes its decision is right. It added that the government will firmly maintain its position.

Poland and other nations have provided Ukraine with military assistance. There are concerns that the farm trade dispute could cause relations between Ukraine and its neighbors to sour.