The US State Department spokesman Ned Price expressed regret over Russia’s decision to suspend its participation in the Black Sea Grain Initiative, adding the decision impacts global food security.
He said that any disruption to the initiative risks spiking food prices, and further imposes hardships on lower-income countries.
It has brought more than 9.5 million metric tons of grain to world markets.
“It has enabled lifesaving food aid to reach vulnerable people in Afghanistan, Somalia, Yemen, Ethiopia, and elsewhere. The initiative helped decrease global prices of grains and oils and reduced food insecurity in lower- and middle-income countries,” said Price.
Britain’s Foreign Secretary implored Russia to agree in the section of the Ukraine grains exportation.
“Over 60 percent of the wheat exported under the Black Sea grain initiative has gone to low and middle-income countries, including Ethiopia, Yemen and Afghanistan,” he added. “It would be unconscionable for those lands to be made to suffer because of Putin’s setbacks on the battlefield in Ukraine,” said James Cleverly.
Meanwhile, the World Food Program (WFP) said that it has considered buying 80,000 tons of wheat from Ukraine. 30,000 tons have already been purchased and reached Turkey.
The spokesman for the World Food Program said that Russia's cancellation of Ukraine's grain export contract may make the process of buying wheat difficult.
“the wheat is expected to arrive in Afghanistan before the beginning of 2023 to be distributed to needy people. The WFP is ready to buy the required wheat from regional countries including Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Turkey,” said Wahidullah Amani, spokesman of WFP in Afghanistan.
Afghanistan mostly imports wheat and flour from Kazakhstan. The Chamber of Commerce and Investment believes that Russia's cancellation of Ukraine's grain contract will have a negative impact on food prices in markets.