Black Sea grain export agreement extended, but Russia wants more on fertilizer exports | Catch My Job


  • The Black Sea deal helps ease the global food price crisis
  • The UN-brokered agreement is being extended for four months
  • Moscow wants to remove barriers to grain, export fertilizer

Nov 17 (Reuters) – A deal aimed at easing global food shortages by helping Ukraine export its agricultural products from Black Sea ports was extended for four months on Thursday, although Russia said its demands had not yet been fully met. himself.

The agreement, initially reached in July, created a protected transit corridor and was designed to ease shortages by allowing exports to resume from three ports in Ukraine, a major producer of grains and oilseeds.

“I welcome the agreement by all parties to continue the Black Sea grain initiative to facilitate the safe navigation of grain, food and fertilizer exports from Ukraine,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in a statement.

The United Nations, he said, was also “fully committed to removing the remaining obstacles to (Russia’s) food and fertilizer exports” – a part of the agreement that Moscow considers crucial.

The Russian foreign ministry confirmed the extension of the agreement for 120 days starting from November 18, without any changes to the current one.

President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said that since August 1, more than 450 ships have transported 11 million tons of Ukrainian grain and other foodstuffs around the world.

“Tens of millions of people, mainly in African countries, have been saved from starvation … food prices are significantly lower than they would be without our food exports,” he said in a video address.

Exporting Russian ammonia via a pipeline to the Black Sea has not yet been agreed as part of the renewal, two sources familiar with negotiations told Reuters. But Russia would continue efforts to resume those exports, one of the sources added. Ammonia is an important ingredient in fertiliser.

Zelenskiy said in September that he would only support the idea of ​​reopening ammonia exports through Ukraine if Moscow handed over prisoners of war, an idea rejected by the Kremlin.

“The renewal of the (deal) … is good news for global food security and for the developing world,” tweeted Rebeca Grynspan, secretary general of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development. “The fertilizer crunch must be solved next.”

The 120-day extension was less than the one-year extension sought by the United Nations and Ukraine. Russia said earlier this week that the current duration of the deal appeared to be “fair”.


A fall in shipments from Ukraine following the Russian invasion at the end of February played a role in the global food price crisis but other important drivers include the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing climate shocks.

Since July, around 11.1 million tonnes of agricultural products have been shipped under the deal, including 4.5 million tonnes of corn and 3.2 million tonnes of wheat.

Chicago wheat prices fell following news of the extension. The benchmark contract was down 2% and corn down 1.3%.

“This is bearish for the market because it removes remaining doubts and we have something clear for the next four months,” said one French trader.

“However, the fact that it’s only for four months … means that uncertainty will start again in four months, with people wondering whether Russia will sign an extension or not.”

Ukraine and Russia are major global grain exporters. Russia is the world’s largest exporter of wheat and a major supplier of fertilizer to global markets.

Since July, Moscow has repeatedly said that its shipments of grain and fertilizer, while not directly targeted, are being limited because sanctions make it harder for exporters to process payments or get shipping and insurance.

Moscow assumed that Russian concerns about easier conditions for its exports would be fully considered in the coming months, its foreign ministry said.

Reporting by Michelle Nichols, Emma Farge, Sybille de La Hammaide, David Ljunggren and Reuters offices, Writing by Nigel Hunt; edited by Guy Faulconbridge, Alex Richardson and Grant McCool

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


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