May 29, 2023

So far, there are no concrete results that would testify to the fulfillment of Russia’s requirements on the “grain deal”. This was announced on Saturday, April 29, by Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Vershinin.

“Progress estimates have been outlined. Today is the end of April, we still have time,” Vershinin said about the prospects for extending the agreement after May 18. He stressed that Moscow is told about the efforts being made by Western countries, but Russia needs results that are not available. The words of the Deputy Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation are quoted by RIA News.

Vershinin said that Moscow had listed five systemic conditions for extending the “grain deal” after May 18. In particular, connection to the SWIFT system of Rosselkhozbank. He recalled that the bank was not connected to the system. “During all this time, one transaction for a small amount has passed, but this is work, one might say, in manual mode. Can you imagine, the volume of transactions is a millionth, these are big transactions. It’s impossible to do this,” said the Deputy Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation.

In addition, Vershinin pointed out that Moscow is rejecting Kyiv’s attempts to put forward political conditions for the launch of the Togliatti-Odessa ammonia pipeline. He noted that since September 2022, various demands have been received from the Ukrainian side through intermediaries. “They were diverse, we rejected them all, and today we reject them,” he said, adding that ammonia has always been seen as a win-win commercial project, but not as something related to the possibility of putting forward political conditions.

As reported, the Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN in Geneva said that the decision to extend the “grain deal” not accepted yet, the actions of the Ukrainian side threaten its implementation. According to him, contrary to various accusations, the Russian side did not artificially limit the export of Ukrainian grain, which is carried out under the Black Sea agreement.

The Kremlin said earlier that the circumstances are developing not in favor of the “grain deal”. As the press secretary of the Russian leader noted, the Black Sea Grain Initiative has not yet been implemented, it has not acquired a package character.

In July last year, Russia, Ukraine, Turkey and the UN signed a “grain deal”. It provides for the export of Ukrainian food and fertilizers from three Black Sea ports, as well as unblocking the export of Russian agricultural products and fertilizers. In March 2023, the agreement was renewed once again.

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