Last year, Ukraine had a record grain harvest – more than 100 million tons, according to the results of 2022, the Ukrainian Grain Association predicts about 66.5 million tons
The grain harvest in Ukraine in 2022 may be halved from the usual indicators, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky wrote on his Twitter. He did not provide specific data.
“Ukrainian harvest this year may be half as much. Our main goal— prevent a global food crisis caused by the Russian invasion, — he wrote.
Zelensky added that the search for alternative ways to supply Ukrainian grain is now ongoing.
According to the State Statistics Service of Ukraine, the harvest of grain and oilseeds in 2021 amounted to 107.38 million t. This is a record in the entire history of Ukraine, said the Minister of Agrarian Policy and Food Roman Leshchenko. In 2020, against the background of the pandemic, the Ukrainian grain harvest amounted to 65.4 million tons, in 2019— 75.2 million tons
In June, the Ukrainian Grain Association predicted a harvest in 2022 at a level of about 66.5 million tons, and exports, subject to a doubling of throughput at the borders with the EU,— 30 million tons. If the logistics capacity remains at the current level, Ukraine will be able to deliver abroad 12-18 million tons, the association indicated.
After the start of the special operation in Ukraine, the export of wheat from the ports of the country was blocked. Kyiv and the UN blamed Moscow for this. The Russian Defense Ministry has stated that ships with grain cannot leave the ports because of Ukrainian mines and the risk of shelling. Western countries warned of the risk of global famine, and UN Secretary General António Guterres proposed lifting some of the sanctions against Russia in order to prevent a food crisis.
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On July 22, Ukraine and Russia separately signed an agreement with the UN and Turkey on the export of grain from the ports of Odessa, Chernomorsk and Yuzhny. According to the document, a safe corridor is being created for the export of grain by sea, representatives of Turkey and the UN will monitor the loading, and check ships at the entrance and exit in the Black Sea— coordination center, which included Ankara, Moscow, Kyiv and the UN. The latter is necessary in order to exclude the transport of weapons in empty courts, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said.
Ukraine has already begun preparations for sending the first ships with grain. Vladimir Zelensky arrived at the port of Chernomorsk (Odessa region) on July 29. There was a loading of grain on a Turkish ship. The press secretary of the Turkish President, Ibrahim Kalyn, said that the first ship could leave the Ukrainian port on August 1.
The Russian Foreign Ministry insists that grain exports from Ukraine and Russia should begin at the same time. In the agreement, UN Secretary General António Guterres undertook to contribute to the removal of restrictions on the export of Russian food. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov explained that, as part of the sanctions, Western countries banned ship insurance, their entry into foreign ports and the entry of foreign ships— into Russia, which has become an obstacle to grain operations from Russia.
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