The Black Sea Grain Initiative has been halted by Russia again
Russian delegations groundlessly refused to register incoming fleets for participation in the initiative.
The Joint Coordination Center (JCC) in Istanbul (which oversees the initiative – ed.) announced that it is impossible to formulate an inspection plan for June 1 due to Russia’s actions, reported the Ministry for Communities, Territories and Infrastructure Development of Ukraine.
Earlier, Russia had registered only one incoming ship for inspection at the Ukrainian port of “Chornomorsk” on May 30 and 31, while other JCC participants confirmed the registration of 10 vessels for three Ukrainian ports in the Black Sea Grain Initiative.
“Russia’s obstructive stance and the absence of registered vessels for inspection have made it impossible to develop an inspection plan for today (June 1 – ed.), which has been communicated to all parties by the JCC Secretariat,” stated the Ukrainian Ministry.
Currently, there are 50 vessels awaiting inspection in the Turkish territorial waters, intended to be loaded with 2,4 million tons of Ukrainian food products for export. It is nearly twice the volume exported in May.
According to the Ukrainian Ministry, some ships have been waiting for JCC inspection for over three months. These delays have already caused over $1 billion in losses, which is reflected in the final cost of food for the world.
“Once again, Russia has found a way to limit global food supplies by blocking the registration of new incoming fleets and obstructing the largest port of Pivdennyi, which is a blatant violation of the terms of the Grain Initiative that the aggressor country also agreed to,” said the Ukrainian Ministry.
The Ukrainian delegation has already sent a letter to the JCC Secretariat demanding to resume full-scale operations with three inspection teams and nine inspections per day, as required by JCC procedures. Ukrainian inspectors are ready to start working immediately once ship registration is restored.
Read more: Russia’s famine game
Overall, more than 30,5 million tons of Ukrainian agricultural products have been exported within the Grain Initiative since August 2022. However, countries received at least 20 million tons less of Ukrainian food products than they were supposed to, due to the constant sabotage and obstruction of work by the Russian delegation in the JCC in the past seven months.