Europe Uses Grain Deal to Profiteer From Africa, Expert Says

A crew member prepares a grain analysis for a control made by members of the Joint Coordination Center (JCC) onboard the Barbados-flagged ship “Nord Vind” coming from Ukraine loaded with grain and anchored in Istanbul, on October 11, 2022InternationalIndiaAfricaIn July 2022, Russia, Ukraine, Turkey and the UN signed an agreement on the provision of a humanitarian sea corridor for ships exporting food and fertilizers from Ukrainian Black Sea ports. On November 19, the agreement was extended for another 120 days. If not renewed, the deal ends on March 18.European countries receive much more Ukrainian grain than African nations, as well as other states in need of grain supplies, Andrey Suzdaltsev, political scientist and Associate Professor at the HSE Department of International Relations tells Sputnik, adding that the West sells Ukrainian grain to poorer countries at higher prices, thus benefiting from it. During the first six months of the deal, it turned out that only 3% of Ukrainian grain went to countries where there is a shortage of food, while the rest of the grain was exported to Europe, the expert says.

"Moreover, [grain] left [Ukraine] at very favorable prices and from there, from Europe, having fallen into the hands of European speculators, it arrived in Africa, Asia, but at completely different prices," Suzdaltsev said. This corrupt deal turned out to be global. And this Ukrainian grain was so profitable at dumping prices that in the winter of this year, wheat went to Spain for cattle feed, and pigs were fattened with this wheat. It was beneficial for Europe. Europe is fighting for itself, but there is no hunger in Europe."

Russia has fully fulfilled its obligations and “provided loading and delivery of Ukrainian grain,” so it would be sent to Africa, Asia and other regions with food shortages, says the expert, adding that “with regard to Russian grain and Russian fertilizers, the promises were not fulfilled” by the West.According to Andrey Suzdaltsev, after the extension of the deal, “nothing has changed this winter in the direction of fulfilling obligations for Russia.””We asked to lift sanctions on infrastructure processes that blocked the possibility of supplying Russian grain and Russian fertilizers to the world market,” states the expert. “Sanctions on insurers who were supposed to insure supplies, on the freight of ships, on logistics, access to ports, terminals, and so on. With these sanctions, it is almost impossible to export grain.”AfricaMalawi Praises First Fertilizer Shipment From Russia as Essential for Tackling Food Crisis6 March, 15:24 GMTUkraine has obtained $7 billion by selling grain, and spent that money to buy weaponry to fight Russia, the political scientist states, adding that for the West, Russia’s loss is much more important than the hunger issue.

"I remind you that during this season, Ukraine has gained $7 billion by selling grain. Moreover, this money was used for weapons against us," notes Suzdaltsev. "The West has a task to prevent the defeat of Ukraine. In fact, it is more important for them that, as part of the deal, we do not touch the southern Ukrainian ports, we do not step on them. And the question is not hunger, but victory over Russia."

On 22 July 2022, Russia, Ukraine, Turkiye and the United Nations signed an agreement to provide a humanitarian sea corridor for ships exporting food and fertilizer from Ukrainian ports of the Black Sea to facilitate the world food crisis, which hit the poorest countries particularly hard.Russian President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly stated that most of the ships carrying Ukrainian grain did not reach the poorest countries of the world and ended up in Europe. He also outlined that Russian products are not entering world markets, as promised by the agreement.The deal is to be expired 18 March unless it is renewed once again. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is demanding that the deal be extended one year.


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