HomeWorld NewsUN, Russia to discuss Ukraine export deal extension

UN, Russia to discuss Ukraine export deal extension

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UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Senior U.N. and Russian officials planned to meet in Geneva on Friday to discuss extending the deal that returned Ukrainian grain to world markets and was supposed to remove obstacles to Russian grain and fertilizer exports.

The deal expires on November 19 and Ukraine and Western nations are pushing for it to be extended. However, Russia’s government has said it is undecided, expressing dissatisfaction with the way the deal has worked out for its side.

UN humanitarian chief Martin Griffiths and UN trade chief Rebekah Grynspan, who has been in charge of the Russian side of the deal, will meet a Russian delegation led by Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Vershinin, he said. the UN on Thursday.

The separate agreements brokered by the United Nations and Turkey and signed by Ukraine and Russia in Istanbul on July 22 were a rare example of tacit cooperation between warring nations in the face of a growing global food crisis following Russia’s invasion on July 24. February to its smallest neighbor. .

Ukraine and Russia were two of the world’s leading suppliers of grain before the war, and Russia was also the leading exporter of fertilizers. Disruptions to its exports caused food shortages and increased prices around the world, hitting poor nations especially hard.

Ukraine and Russia provided about 30% of the world’s exported wheat and barley, 20% of its corn and more than 50% of its sunflower oil, Grynspan told the UN Security Council last week. Russia was the world’s largest exporter of fertilizers, accounting for 15% of world exports.

Under the July 22 deal, Ukraine shipped more than 10 million tons of grain from three Black Sea ports to destinations in Africa, Asia and Europe.

But Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Andrey Rudenko said Tuesday that the Kremlin had not decided whether to extend their deal. “We are very dissatisfied with the way the Russian side is implementing it,” he said.

Although there are no US or European Union sanctions on food and fertilizer shipments from Russia as punishment for its invasion of Ukraine, the Kremlin has pointed to major obstacles, such as obtaining financing and insurance for ships and finding ports where they can dock Russian ships.

In late October, Russia’s ambassador to the UN, Vassily Nebenzia, said: “Russia needs to see the export of its grains and fertilizers on the world market, which has never happened since the beginning of the agreement.”

Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the US ambassador to the United Nations, visited Ukraine’s capital Kyiv on Tuesday, warning that global food security depends on renewing the deal.

He said that 828 million people in the world go to bed hungry every night and that makes it imperative that the agreement be extended.

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