Three Ukrainian ports will be able to serve 80 vessels a month to ease the current grain crisis, Deputy Agrarian Policy Minister Taras Vysotsky has said.

Vysotsky confirmed that Ukraine currently has dozens of applications from other countries, which confirms that ship owners and traders believe that the grain agreement to unblock exports will be performed under international patronage.

“Ukraine expects to receive at least $20 billion for grain exports taking into account prices on the world food market,” he said. “The three ‘Great Odesa’ ports will be able to serve 80 vessels a month.”

“It’s about 3-3.5 million tons of produce a month. So, as of today, this is a rather optimistic indicator. And this is a positive signal for equalizing prices on the domestic market,” he added.

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According to Vysotsky, the rise in world grain prices will be able to cover the cost price so that farmers can continue their operations and confidently look to autumn fieldwork.

Earlier, an agreement on secure supplies of Ukrainian grain was signed on July 22 in  Turkey by representatives of Ukraine, Russia, the UN, and Turkey.

The joint coordination center was unveiled on July 27. The signatories to the agreement will monitor its implementation.

In line with the agreement, dry cargo ships with a load of grain and food from the ports of Ukraine anchor at a pre-negotiated point near the entrance to the Istanbul Strait. The vessel is then inspected by representatives of Turkey, Russia, Ukraine, and the United Nations, from the joint coordination center. After inspection, the ships will continue their way to their final destination.

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“The agreement signed today by Ukraine, the Russian Federation, and Turkey under the auspices of the UN opens the way for the commercial export of food from Ukraine to the Black Sea. This will help avoid the catastrophe of food shortages for millions of people around the world. It is a beacon of hope, opportunity, and relief,” UN Secretary-general Antonio Guterres said on June 7.

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According to the Ukrainian authorities, Russia has already stolen at least 500,000 tons of Ukrainian wheat. Much of this cargo was delivered by truck to ports in occupied Crimea and then transported by ships, including those that find themselves under Western sanctions.

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