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Ukraine and Romania Sign new Grain Deal

Ukraine Crisis

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Ukraine and neighboring Romania signed a deal on Friday to work together to boost Kyiv’s export of grain through the latter’s territory after Moscow broke off a shipping agreement that allowed safe passage through the Black Sea, reported the Euronews.

The accord was signed during a trip by Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal to the Romanian capital, Bucharest, for talks with his Romanian counterpart Marcel Ciolacu. The two leaders discussed ways to ramp up the war-torn nation’s key grain exports, and improve infrastructure for transportation across river, rail, road, sea, including at border crossings.

Ukraine’s economy is heavily dependent on farming, and its grain is crucial for world supplies of wheat, barley, and sunflower oil. Ciolacu told a news conference after the meeting that he hopes Romania can transport more than 60% of Ukraine’s grain exports.

He also noted the “ambitious” target to double the transport of Ukrainian grain through Romania that was set last week during a meeting that included Western and Ukrainian officials in Romania’s Danube River town of Galati.  Romania intends to double the amount from 2 million to 4 million tons per month, but Ciolacu did not specify a timeframe for the increase.

So far, Romania has been one of the five European Union member states, also including Hungary, to insist on a ban on the import of select Ukrainian agricultural products, currently set to last until September 15, due to the glut in neighboring countries following an exemption from customs duties and quotas for Ukrainian grain.

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