Ukraine seeks to extend "Grain deal" for 12 months year to involve more ports - deputy minister
23.02.2023 15:57 "Agro Perspectiva" (Kyiv) —
This week, Ukraine will appeal to Türkiye and the United Nations to start negotiations on extending the Black Sea Grain Agreement for at least 12 months to include the ports of Mykolaiv.
This was stated on Wednesday by the Deputy Minister of Infrastructure, Yuriy Vaskov, who spoke in an interview with Reuters, Ukrinform saw.
«This week we will receive an official proposal on the need to work on extending the agreement,» Vaskov said.
«We will ask… to extend it not for 120 days, but at least for a year, because the Ukrainian and global agricultural market should be able to plan these volumes (of exports) in the long term,» Vaskov said.
He noted that Ukraine would insist on increasing the number of inspection teams in order to eliminate the amassing of vessels awaiting inspection.
Ukraine has repeatedly accused Russia of dragging with the inspection of bulkers carrying Ukrainian agricultural goods, which led to reduced supplies and losses for traders.
Russia rejected the accusations, saying that they fulfill all their obligations under the grain export agreement.
Vaskov noted that the situation with inspections has not changed since November, and that there were only three inspection groups deployed by the Russian side.
«There are no positive dynamics. At the same time, the UN, Türkiye, and Ukraine are ready to conduct 40 inspections per day, if necessary. And there is such a need about 140 ships are waiting for inspection,» he said.
Ukraine exports about 3 million tonnes of agricultural products per month, but Vaskov said that Ukraine could export 6 million tonnes per month from Odesa region’s ports and further increase this figure to 8 million tonnes if Mykolaiv joins the agreement.
As reported, the agreement on the export of Ukrainian grain through the Black Sea was concluded between Ukraine, Türkiye, and the UN, as well as between Türkiye, the UN, and Russia on July 22, 2022 for a period of 180 days. Later it was extended for the same period. It expires on March 18, unless an extension is agreed upon.