Olga Trofimtseva, Ambassador-at-Large of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine (MFA) and coordinator of the Council of Exporters and Investors, stated this at a briefing in Ukraine Media Center – Ukrinform.
"If the grain corridor stops now, including deliveries under the humanitarian program Grain from Ukraine, it will be more difficult to physically export grain because we'll have to do it through the EU, which will take longer. We understand that we’ll not be able to transport such volumes by road and rail at once. This'll have a corresponding impact on the food and social security situation on the African continent, especially in those countries that depend on the UN World Food Program," she said.
Trofimtseva emphasized that the negative consequences of stopping the grain corridor will be felt almost immediately by those countries that receive humanitarian food from Ukraine, as they are unable to accumulate sufficient stocks.
According to her, if the supply of Ukrainian grain to countries on the verge of starvation is stopped, the citizens of these countries will face food shortages in 2-3 weeks. Refugee flows will increase in a month at the most.
"That is, the grain corridor is shutting down, and we have already seen the situation in some African countries deteriorate for several weeks. In a few more weeks, a month at most, we will see an increase in the flow of refugees, primarily towards the EU," Trofimtseva explained.
As reported, in 8 months of the grain corridor operation, Ukraine exported more than 3 million tonnes of food to African countries through seaports, including almost 1 million tonnes shipped to countries in need. Within the framework of the UN food humanitarian programs and Grain from Ukraine, 525,800 tonnes were shipped to countries in need of Ukrainian agricultural products.
The Grain from Ukraine program was initiated by President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky. It involves the purchase of Ukrainian grain by partner countries and its transfer to countries affected by the humanitarian crisis. The program is implemented in partnership with the World Food Program under the auspices of the United Nations.