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G7 Calls for Extension of Black Sea Grain Initiative

Reuters writer Michelle Nichols reported late last week that, “A deal allowing the safe Black Sea export of Ukraine grain could start winding down next week after Russia said it will not approve any new vessels unless their operators guarantee the transits will be done by May 18 – ‘the expected date of … closure.’

Russia has strongly signaled that it will not allow the Ukraine Black Sea export deal – agreed in July last year – to continue beyond May 18 because a list of demands to facilitate its own grain and fertilizer exports has not been met.”

Also on Friday, Reuters writers Luiza Ilie and Pavel Polityuk reported that, “Russia has said extending last July’s agreement beyond a May 18 deadline depends on the West lifting restrictions it says hinder Moscow’s agricultural exports.”

Worried about its ability to ship grain from its Black Sea ports, Ukraine has stepped up exports via ports on the Danube River that flows though central and southeastern Europe,” the article said.

“Ukraine’s Black Sea Crop Exports Resume After Latest Halt,” by Aine Quinn, Aliaksandr Kudrytski and Lyubov Pronina. Bloomberg News (April 19, 2023).

Reuters writer Cassandra Garrison reported on Friday that, “Grain markets still faced uncertainty over exports from war-torn Ukraine, despite a resumption of vessel checks under a Black Sea deal and plans by the European Union to allow transit of Ukrainian grain to continue through eastern EU states.”

Meanwhile, Reuters writers Katya Golubkova and Yuka Obayashi reported today that, “The Group of Seven (G7) economic powers called on Sunday for the ‘extension, full implementation and expansion’ of a critical deal to export Ukrainian grain through the Black Sea, the group’s agriculture ministers said in a communique.”

The article indicated that, “In the communique after a two-day meeting in Miyazaki, Japan, the G7 agriculture ministers ‘recognised the importance’ of the deal, saying: ‘We strongly support the extension, full implementation and expansion of (the Black Sea Grain Initiative) BSGI.’

‘We condemn Russia’s attempts to use food as a means of destabilisation and as tool of geopolitical coercion and reiterate our commitment to acting in solidarity and supporting those most affected by Russia’s weaponisation of food,’ the communique said.

The article aded that, “Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is scheduled to discuss the Ukraine Black Sea grain export deal with U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in New York this week.”

Keith Good Photo

Keith Good is the Farm Policy News editor for the farmdoc project. He has previously worked for the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, and compiled the daily News Summary from 2003-2015. He is a graduate of Purdue University (M.S.- Agricultural Economics), and Southern Illinois University School of Law.

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