The first ship under the Grain from Ukraine program in 2024 left for Nigeria
Bulk carrier SKY GATE, with 25,000 tons of wheat for Nigeria, left the Ukrainian port. It has been the first ship under the Grain from Ukraine humanitarian program in 2024: over $100 million have been raised to continue the operations of the humanitarian initiative for countries most affected by food shortages.
Since the temporary Ukrainian sea corridor started its operations in August 2023, over 22 million tons of cargo have been exported from Ukraine overall. In particular, since August 2023, over 15 million tons of Ukrainian grain have been exported from the ports of Odesa, including wheat under the Grain from Ukraine humanitarian initiative for countries on the brink of famine.
“The Ukrainian corridor today is the main route for accessing the products of Ukrainian agrarians to world markets. This is significant not only for the economic recovery of Ukraine but also for supporting global food security,” stated Oleksandr Kubrakov, Minister for Communities, Territories, and Infrastructure Development of Ukraine.
On February 8, 2024, Kubrakov reported that the bulk carrier SKY GATE, with 25,000 tons of Ukrainian humanitarian wheat for Nigeria, was moving through the temporary Ukrainian sea corridor. It became the first vessel in 2024 with humanitarian wheat chartered by the UN World Food Program within the Grain from Ukraine initiative.
The Grain from Ukraine program was initiated by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in November 2022 and is implemented jointly with the UN World Food Program and donor countries. It aims to provide access to Ukrainian food to countries suffering from famine. 34 countries and international organizations joined the program in the first year of its operations. In addition, 170,000 tons of Ukrainian humanitarian wheat were sent to Ethiopia, Yemen, Somalia, Kenya, and Afghanistan during this time.
At the Grain from Ukraine second summit, held in Kyiv on November 25, 2023, over $100 million was raised for countries most affected by food shortages to continue the operations of the humanitarian initiative.
At the same time, Russia has been actively trying to disrupt the work of the Ukrainian sea route, particularly by shelling the port infrastructure.
“During the night of February 10, they [Ukrainian ports of Odesa, Chornomorsk, and Pivdennyi – ed.] were again attacked by Russian drones. Unfortunately, we have damage to infrastructure for transshipment and destroyed grain,” reported Oleksandr Kubrakov, Minister for Communities, Territories, and Infrastructure Development of Ukraine.
Kubrakov also added that since July 2023, almost 200 port infrastructure objects have been damaged due to Russian attacks, and there are more than 26 civilian casualties. “At the same time, port workers are doing recovery work quite quickly. I saw it with my own eyes today. Moreover, transshipment volumes are increasing every day,” emphasized the Minister.