Ukraine has $10B worth of grain available — Zelenskyy Featured

Ukraine has around $10 billion worth of grain available for sale in the wake of a deal signed with Russia to unblock supplies and will also have a chance to sell the current harvest, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.

"Approximately 20 million tons of last year's grain harvest will be exported. There will also be a chance to sell this year's harvest ... at the moment we have about $10 billion worth of grains available," said Zelenskyy.

Türkiye, UN, Russia and Ukraine signed a landmark deal on Friday in Istanbul to reopen Ukrainian Black Sea ports for grain exports, raising hopes that an international food crisis aggravated by the Russian incursion can be eased.

"This is another demonstration that Ukraine can withstand the war," he said in a late Friday address.

"In this context, I am especially grateful to the UN secretary general and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for their efforts," Zelenskyy added.

The Istanbul deal, brokered by Türkiye, is a chance to prevent a global food catastrophe that could cause chaos in many countries, Zelenskyy said.

"There may be some provocations on the part of Russia, attempts to discredit Ukrainian and international efforts," said Zelenskyy.

Easing global food crisis

Ankara and the UN have been working on a plan that would enable Ukraine to export millions of grain stockpiles that have been stuck in Ukraine’s Black Sea ports due to the conflict — a move that could ease a global food crisis that has sent wheat and other grain prices soaring.

Last week, the sides met in Istanbul, reaching a tentative agreement on the plan. The plan foresees joint controls of ships as they leave and arrive at Black Sea ports and a mechanism to ensure the safety of the transfer routes, Turkish officials said.

Türkiye's Communications Director Fahrettin Altun in a statement said Ankara "continue[s] to work hard to solve the current regional and global crises such as food security, migration, energy shortages, and regional conflicts among others."

A coordination centre for the shipping of exports would be established in Istanbul and would include UN, Turkish, Russian and Ukrainian officials./TRT