Black Sea exports ramp up, bringing confidence to global commerce and food to most vulnerable — Global Issues

Describe as a “lighthouse of hope” of the UN Secretary General António Guterres At the signing ceremony of the plan on July 27 in Istanbul, with representatives of Russia and Ukraine, the agreement allowed nearly 240 ships to leave Ukrainian ports with about 5.4 million tons of grain and other food, as of August 1, 2022. .

“What I am seeing with the Black Sea Grains Initiative is increase confidencefaith in the shipping community, the commercial shipping community,” said Dennis Malone, United Nations Representative at Joint Coordination Center in Odesa, for ships to and from Ukrainian ports.

We see shipping insurance rates drop, we noticed the quality of the ships used to export grain increasing. We also see an increase in trust in the local community, in the farmer community. They began to see that their grain was being exported, that the cellars were being emptied, and they could begin to plan for future harvests. ”


A ship in Odesa, BC Vanessa, is the fourth humanitarian ship chartered by the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) out of Ukraine. After it left Ukrainian waters, its cargo was inspected in Istanbul, as well as with all ships included in the initiative.

Their precious commodity – 30,000 tons of wheat – is shipped to Afghanistan, to alleviate the desperate humanitarian emergency there.

Other UN shipments involved in this initiative have shipped wheat to Ethiopia and Yemen.

One result of the deal was a sharp drop in global food prices, once again allowing consumers to buy grain more easily.

Ukraine, one of the world’s largest grain exporters, typically supplies about 45 million tons to the global market each year.

‘A matter of survival’

After Russia invaded the country on February 24, mountains of grain accumulated in the bunkers, with ships unable to safely navigate Ukrainian ports. Today, although sea routes have been reopened, serious economic challenges remain for farmers.

Currently, the offer price is too low,“Vyachyslav Nevmerzhytskyi, Vice President of the Odesa Regional Farmers’ Association said. “Today, I will sell at a loss because the cost to grow and produce grain is still (higher).

“So if I agree to sell at this price now I will lose. It is therefore a matter of survival, the financial survival of (me) farm businesses”.

Waiting game

The transportation of grain to the ports was also very slow. Truck drivers lined up for kilometers to get to the port of Yuzhny, and some stood still for days.

One driver told UN News: “Once the truck was loaded, it took me three to four hours to get here, ready to be discharged. “But I have been standing (here) for five days. No movement, no management, no one to explain how long we will be herewhat to do, move, go home. “

suitable for Black Sea Grains Initiative, Ukrainian ships guide cargo ships seeking to go to and from Odesa, Chornomorsk and Yuzhny, through a maritime humanitarian corridor in international waters. Their mission is to stay away from exploited waters.

Stop on the way

As the ships approach Istanbul, they will be examined by teams from another Joint Coordination Center based in the Turkish city – as was the case with BC Vanessa on Wednesday – with representatives from Russia, Türkiye , Ukraine and the United Nations are participating.

Loaded with humanitarian supplies, the ship then left the waters of Istanbul, sailing west to the Turkish port of Samsun, where its wheat would be milled.

The powder will then be loaded onto another ship to Karachi and then transported by road to Afghanistan for distribution.

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