Politics and Administration

Farmers in Ukraine need confidence

Improving global food security is one of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine shows just how fragile this system is. The World Trade Institute has been monitoring Ukraine’s grain exports since February 2022.

Together with a Ukrainian specialist in grain trade, Christian Häberli has been observing every month since February 2022 how the Ukrainian-African grain trade has deteriorated due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The data collected shows very impressively the extent to which Ukraine’s agricultural exports, especially those shipped via the Black Sea route to North Africa, are declining as a result of the war. The United Nations fears that there will be food shortages and hunger in poor parts of the world if Ukraine, currently a major grain supplier, were to cease exports. The third survey in August showed the influence of the agreement signed by Russia and Ukraine with the United Nations and Turkey at the end of July. “With the agreement, it was possible to ensure that the grain trade is no longer used as a weapon of war by Russia for the time being. This is a great success, which must also be recognized accordingly,” says Häberli. On November 19, 2022, the agreement was extended for 120 days after Russia had threatened on various occasions to let it expire.