June 16, 2022


Temporary silos to be built along Ukraine border to assist grain exports


US President Joe Biden said temporary silos will be built along the Ukraine border to help the country ship more grains and address a rising worldwide food crisis, Reuters reported.


The president said he is working closely with European partners to get 20 million tonnes of grain locked up in Ukraine out onto the market to help bring down food prices, adding that it cannot be shipped through the Black Sea because it will be destroyed.


Grain shipments have stalled since Russia's invasion and blockade of Ukrainian Black Sea ports, with more than 20 million tonnes stuck in silos. Ukraine is reporting a silo shortage for a new crop.


Grain, cooking oil, fuel, and fertiliser prices are all rising as a result of the war.


Russia and Ukraine produce nearly a third of the world's wheat. Ukraine is a major exporter of corn and sunflower oil, and Russia is a key exporter of fertiliser.


Ukraine and Russia have been laying sea mines since the war began. Approximately 84 foreign ships are stranded in Ukrainian ports, many of which are carrying grain cargoes.


Biden stated that Washington was working on a plan to transport grain by rail, but noted that Ukrainian track gauges differ from those in Europe, requiring grain to be transferred to different trains at the border.


Biden said the temporary silos on the borders of Ukraine could be built in Poland too.


He said the grain could be shipped using Ukrainian railway cars into the new silos, then transferred to European freight cars to ship it through the ocea and across the globe.


Andriy Yermak, chief of staff to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, said the plan is useful to ensuring food security, but they also require a green corridor for their ports.


According to Ukraine's agriculture ministry, European countries are considering providing temporary silos to "preserve the harvest and secure future grain supplies."


Ukraine claims that resuming grain exports via the Black Sea is the best way to resume shipments.


-      Reuters

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