In an article published on the Kremlin’s website, the Russian president assured that Moscow would be able to continue supplying grain to African countries that are suffering the consequences of the expiry of the grain deal in 2022.
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday guaranteed that Moscow would replace Ukrainian grain destined for Africa as a Russia-Africa summit approaches after the Kremlin abandoned a crucial grain deal for world food.
“I want to assure you that Ukrainian grain can be exchanged commercially and without cost, especially as we expect another record harvest this year,” the head of state wrote. In an article published on the Kremlin website“Russia and Africa: Joining Efforts for Peace, Progress and a Prosperous Future”.
“Russia will continue intensive efforts to ensure the supply of grain, foodstuffs, fertilizers and other goods to Africa (…) the network of Russian embassies and trade missions in Africa will be expanded,” added Vladimir Putin.
African Union ‘regrets’ Russia’s withdrawal from grain deal
A grain deal signed in Istanbul in July 2022 and renewed twice, which made it possible to reopen Ukrainian agricultural exports by sea despite a Russian attack, expired last week.
In one year, nearly 33 million tons of grain helped leave Ukrainian ports, mainly corn and wheat, helping to stabilize world food prices and avert the risk of shortages.
Moscow has refused to extend it, complaining of insufficient grain supplies to poor countries and restrictions on its own exports of agricultural products and fertilizers.
On Tuesday, the African Union “regretted” Russia’s withdrawal from the deal. “I call on the partners to resolve the issues to allow the continued and safe delivery of grains and fertilizers from Ukraine and Russia to areas in need, including Africa,” AU Commission President Moussa Faki Mahamat said.
Moscow said on Friday it understood the “concerns” of African countries and pledged to continue providing aid to countries in need. Russia also said last week that ships bound for Ukraine in the Black Sea would be considered capable of carrying military cargo.
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