This week, Ukraine plans to discuss with Turkey and the UN the issue of extending the “grain agreement” for at least one year, including Mykolaiv ports, РБК-Україна reports with reference to Reuters.
"This week we will send an official proposal on the need to work on the extension of the agreement. We will ask to extend it not for 120 days, but at least for a year because the Ukrainian and global agricultural market should be able to plan these volumes in the long term," said Yuriy Vaskov, the Deputy Minister of Infrastructure of Ukraine.
At the same time, according to him, Ukraine will insist on increasing the number of inspection groups in order to eliminate the queues of vessels awaiting inspection.
Vaskov also added that Mykolayiv ports, which accounted for 35% of Ukrainian food exports before the Russian invasion, are also ready to join the initiative and will only need two weeks to start work, and the occupation of the Kinburn Spit is not an obstacle to this.
"If ports are included in the initiative, there will be an obligation not to attack ships transporting agriproducts, which can work out even in the current situation," said the deputy minister.
It should be noted that currently, the initiative allows the grain to be exported from three Ukrainian ports. The agreement was extended in November 2022 and expires on March 18, unless an agreement is reached on its extension.