Talks to extend the deal still going on
Turkey is working hard for the extension of the grain deal for Russian demands about its implementation to be met.
“Talks to extend the grain deal aren’t over yet. They are still going on. Turkey is working very hard for the Black Sea initiative to be extended and the demands of all sides, including Russia’s, to be met,” the source said.
Agreements to export food from Ukraine were signed on July 22, 2022 in Istanbul to last 120 days. One of the agreements sets forth a procedure for the export of grain from Kiev-controlled ports of Odessa, Chernomorsk and Yuzhny. Russia, Turkey and the United Nations established a coordination center to inspect ships with grain to prevent weapons smuggling and provocations. Russia and the UN also concluded a memorandum for the UN to undertake to work toward lifting anti-Russian restrictions that hamper exports of agricultural products and fertilizers. The deal was extended for another 120 days in November and expires on March 18.
The Russian Foreign Ministry said om March 2 that the deal wasn’t working as the West sabotaged the Russia-related clauses of the agreements. The ministry pointed to 262,000 tons of Russian fertilizers that Russia planned to donate to the poorest countries, but ended up having them blocked in the ports of Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and the Netherlands. They also highlighted that there were hurdles for shipments of Russian fertilizers and food to the world market. The only shipment that got through was 20,000 tons for Malawi.