Wales, Ukraine and the war

Now in its third month, the war in Ukraine continues to reshape the world order.

Like all nations, Wales cannot escape its repercussions. the The Prime Minister called for people to stand in solidarity with Ukraine, but also pointed out that it may involve “making some sacrifices”.

To date, the focus has naturally been on Wales humanitarian response.

But what about other impacts?

This article describes the impact of the war on international relations, food and energy supply, the economy and relations between the UK and the EU. It provides an update on the measures taken by the Senedd to stand in solidarity with Ukraine.

Wales’ place in the world

Political parties were united in their condemnation of the invasionsupporting sanctions against Russia and measures that help Ukraine.

Members quickly joined calls for the investigation of the International Criminal Court in alleged Russian war crimeswho is now supported by 41 states. the General CounselMick Antoniw, explore if Wales could collect testimonies of Ukrainian arrivals to submit as evidence.

Members shared their point of views From Wales as a “land of empathy” (Tom Giffard), “a nation that supports other nations” (Mick Antoniw) and a “nation of peace(Heledd Fychan).

When a ship carrying Russian cargo was diverted from the port of Milford Haven, Paul Davies, MS of Preseli Pembrokeshire, clarified that Russian ships are not welcome in UK ports and Plaid Cymru chief Adam Price has called for no Russian oil to enter Welsh ports. It was supported by the prime minister on March 1.

On International Women’s Daythe Llywydd led the members in tribute to the women of Ukraine. Welsh Liberal Democrat leader Jane Dodds described denunciations of sex traffickers targeting women and children who the Minister of Social Justice OK to raise with the British government.

Members have also paid tribute to Welsh Armed Forcesdeployed in Estonia for carry out the UKit is battle group on NATO’s eastern flank.

Food Safety and Farming Bill (Wales)

the The World Bank warned of a “human catastrophe” of hunger on April 21.

War threatens international food security because Ukraine and Russia are among the world’s leading exporters of wheat, corn, sunflower and barley. The closing of Black Sea shipping alone cut off about 90% of Ukraine’s grain exports and half of its total exports.

March 8, Leader of the Opposition, Andrew RT Davies, asked the Prime Minister if the Welsh Government was considering Farm Bill (Wales) will reflect international developments and called for a food summit of farmers, processors and retailers.

The Prime Minister agreed that the bill has a new context and that it:

  • carry out Wales-specific assessments of the impact of war on food security to contribute to UK government assessments;
  • called for food security to be discussed by the four nations;
  • would consider organizing a summit on food and advised later that the Minister Responsible for Rural Affairs meet regularly with stakeholders.

The Senedd passed a motion on March 23, noting the negative impact on global food security resulting from the invasion and its direct effect on the people of Wales.

On April 27, the Minister of Rural Affairs referred to the war as one of the ‘challenges’ in the preparation of the bill and indicated that she was closely monitoring its impact on the agricultural sectors in Wales. She also explained that the war is adding “another layer of difficulty” for the food and drink sector in Wales.

A “complete energy embargo” from Russia?

The war threatens the energy security of European countries as they depend to some extent on Russia for oil, gas and coal. While many have announced plans to reduce their dependence on Russia, most experts, including the International Energy Agencyagree that the complete replacement of the Russian offer cannot be done quickly.

Wales (and UK) is less dependent on Russian oil and gas, however, the Economy Minister explained that changes to interdependence with Russia “still mean that there will be challenges in the energy supply of this country”. Plaid Cymru called for a “total energy embargo” of Russia and Wales to “accelerate the development of renewable energies.”

The UK government has since pledged to end Russian oil imports this year and published a energy security strategy, which focuses on offshore wind, hydrogen and nuclear. BBC Wales analyzed what the strategy means for Wales. Calls to restart fracking as a solution were excluded by the Welsh Government March 30.

“Each of us will feel the impact”

the The International Monetary Fund compares the economic impact of the war to “seismic waves, its effects will spread far and wide”.

On April 11, the world Bank predicted that the war will cause “significant economic losses”. Ukraine’s economy is expected to contract by 45% and Russia’s GDP will fall by 11.2% due to the sanctions.

On the day of the invasion, the The Prime Minister asked penalties that:

bite into the [Russian] the economy…and that will mean that all of us will feel the effects.

On March 8, the minister of Finance and local government, described a deterioration in economic forecasts, resulting in part from the war. The next day, Head of Plaid Cymru, Adam Price, called for “nothing less than a total economic embargo” by Russia.

the Economy Ministeralso warned that reduced supplies are exacerbating the cost of living crisisin line with the World Bank’s forecast of a “global peak in poverty levels”.

Commissioner Senedd Ken Skates explained the measures taken by the Senedd Commission and partners to ensure that they do not hold any investments in Russian entities. Welsh local authorities have also announcement that they will divest themselves of their assets in Russia.

Brexit and EU membership for Ukraine

Essential items collected in Wales for Ukraine were held on the border between the UK and the EU. Llyr Gruffydd described how “hundreds of thousands of articles” were delayed by new post-Brexit controls.

Reports cite confusion over paperwork required for items for humanitarian and non-commercial purposes. March 8, the Trefnydd suggested discussions between the Welsh and British governments may have taken place. A customs bondage to simplify the process was announced two days later by the British government.

Elsewhere, in a historic gesture, the EU launched Ukraine’s accession to the EU at a joint EU-Ukraine press conference on 8 April. President Zelensky submitted Ukraine’s questionnaire on April 18 and expects a decision in june.

UK-EU Article 781 Trade and Cooperation Agreement (ACT) gives the UK a role when new countries apply to join the EU. The EU must notify the UK of applications for EU membership, provide the UK with information on the impact of its membership on agreements between the UK and the EU and take account of any UK concern. the partnership boardwhich oversees the TCA and has powers in this area, is assisted by the Welsh Government.

Senedd acts to help Ukraine

On March 9, the Senedd accepted a motion condemning the invasion and expressing its solidarity with Ukraine. The motion calls on states to join the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in response to an increased risk of nuclear war.

The Senedd also supports Wales becoming a ‘super godfather’ of Ukrainian refugees and passed legislation to:

  • Exempt Ukrainians from charges when using health services that would otherwise apply to foreign visitors; and to
  • Accelerate the pet arrival process without the correct vaccinations or the documents usually required. The Welsh government estimates that 100-200 pets could arrive from Ukraine.

After that ?

The Prime Minister has already described Iimitations on other major products to Welsh industry, such as the doubling of the price of nickel, used by producers of semiconductors, smartphones and electric vehicles, and temporary measures taken by some supermarkets to ensure fair distribution of a small number of products. the Minister of Rural Affairs also acknowledged the impact of increases in fuel and fertilizer prices on the agricultural sectors in Wales.

Like experts predict a protracted war, Wales can expect to feel its impacts more in the future.

Article by Sara Moran, Senedd Research, Welsh Parliament

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