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Black Sea deal: Ukraine to send 25,000 tons of grain to Nigeria

Black Sea deal: Ukraine to send 25,000 tons of grain to Nigeria
December 19
22:06 2023

The Ukrainian government says it is preparing to ship grain weighing 25,000 tons from the Turkish port of Samsun to Nigeria as part of the Black Sea grain deal.

The Black Sea grain initiative was set up in July 2022 to abate a global food crisis after Russia invaded Ukraine, a neighbouring country and fellow key grain exporter.

In a statement on Monday, Vasyl Bodnar, ambassador of Ukraine to Turkey said the grain is currently being stored in Turkey under the aegis of the United Nations World Food Program.

In September 2023, the envoy said the Ukrainian government submitted proposals to Ankara to resume the “grain corridor” without Russia since there were “no restrictions on the export of goods for ships passing through the humanitarian corridor”.

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“This grain was delivered in bulk from one of the ports in Ukraine during the Black Sea Grain Initiative. It is now stored in Türkiye under the auspices of the UN World Food Program,” Bodnar said.

“It is important for us that we cooperate with the World Food Program to supply grain to countries such as Nigeria.

“After visiting the port and the Fuat Sezgin vessel, which will deliver the cargo to Nigeria, the diplomat said that a total of 60 more ships are planned to be sent from different ports.

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“This initiative will be implemented as the grain is used, either from Turkish ports or from other ports where it is currently stored. 

“The key coordinator is the UN World Food Program, which uses the possibilities of loading either from Ukrainian ports or from those that were previously purchased or stored in Türkiye or other countries. In particular, we are talking about Spain, which is often mentioned as one of the destinations for Ukrainian grain.” 

Disclosing details on the shipment, Tolga Özal, captain of the ship, said the cargo will arrive in Nigeria in about a month.

“The grain that will be loaded on the ship for about 10 more days is 25,000 tons. After loading, we will head for Nigeria. The journey to the Nigerian coast will take about 20 more days and may also depend on weather conditions,” Özal said.

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In July 2023, the Russian government halted its participation in a deal that allowed the export of Ukrainian grain through the Black Sea despite a wartime blockade.

The Black Sea deal was vital to ensure food moved from Ukraine to the wider world especially countries in Africa, Middle East, and Asia.

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