Turkish president says Black Sea grain deal extends for another 2 months

The Black Sea Grain Initiative, which allows the export of Ukrainian grain and other agricultural products from Black Sea ports, extended for another two months, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced on Wednesday.

“With the efforts of our country, the support of our Russian friends and the contributions of our Ukrainian friends, it was decided to extend the Black Sea grain deal for another two months,” Erdogan said while addressing his party members via teleconference.

“I wish that this decision, which is of vital importance for the uninterrupted operation of global food supply chains and especially for facilitating the access to grain of the countries in need, will be beneficial to all parties,” he stressed.

Ankara will continue its efforts to ensure that the agreement goes on in the next period by fulfilling all the conditions, he added.

In addition, Erdogan thanked Russia for not preventing the exit of Turkish ships in Mykolaiv and Olvia ports.

In July 2022, Russia and Ukraine separately signed a document in Istanbul with Türkiye and the United Nations on grain and fertilizer exports from Ukraine and Russia to ensure supplies to global markets amid the Ukraine crisis.

The initial 120-day agreement was extended by another 120 days in November 2022 and then by 60 days in March 2023.

The memorandum of understanding between Russia and the United Nations on the facilitation of exports of Russian food and fertilizer is a parallel agreement with the Black Sea Grain Initiative.

While the exports of Ukrainian grain have made strides, Russia has constantly expressed displeasure with the lack of progress in the facilitation of exports of Russian food and fertilizer. ■

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