Erdoğan: “Russia and Ukraine extended the grain deal”

Erdoğan: “Russia and Ukraine extended the grain deal”

Russia and Ukraine have agreed to extend the grain deal. This was announced on Saturday by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. However, it remains unclear as to how long it has been extended. The current deal was due to expire on March 19.

Ukraine and Russia are major exporters of wheat, barley, sunflower oil, and other foodstuffs to Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. Russia was the world's largest exporter of fertilizers prior to the outbreak of war. The disruption of these resources as a result of the Russian invasion in February 2022 has raised global food prices and fueled fears of a hunger crisis in poorer countries.

In his speech at the opening ceremony of a facility in Çanakkale, Erdoğan stated, "As a result of our negotiations with both parties, we have ensured the extension of the agreement period expiring on March 19." Erdoğan also thanked Ukraine, Russia, and the United Nations for their efforts to preserve the deal, which he deemed essential for the stability of the global food supply. According to the Turkish President, this deal has enabled the shipment of 25 million tons of grain to global markets via more than 800 ships.

In addition, a second agreement was reached with Russia to facilitate the export of Russian food items and fertilizer. Russia had previously threatened to terminate the agreements, claiming that Western sanctions were still preventing them from exporting grain and fertilizer.