How to take grain out of Ukraine with blocked ports

The European Union promises to help warring Ukraine to export grain. The European Commission is actively looking for solutions to fully resume food exports.

Ukraine is Europe’s largest grain producer and one of its main suppliers to Africa and the Middle East. However, the Black Sea ports in the warring country are blocked by the Russian military, so it is impossible to take anything out by sea through them.

The Commission called on market players to promptly provide additional trucks and trains. This will help to significantly reduce the waiting time at the border, which today ranges from 16 to 30 days. European Commissioner for Transport Adina Valean says:

“In three months, Ukraine will need to take out 20 million tons of grain. If we calculate how many transport units we need to receive this cargo over the same period of time, we will get 10 thousand wagons and barges. So the task is really difficult. should increase the capacity, number and efficiency of operations, use much more wagons and barges for the transport of grain.”

The Black and Azov seas are occupied by Russian ships. Even if the ports of Odessa and Nikolaev are under the control of Ukrainian forces, ships cannot sail from there. Permanent Representative of Ukraine to the European Union Vsevolod Chentsov notes:

“This is, of course, a risk to food security. During the visit, the Chairman of the Council EU Charles Michel to Odessa, it was important for us to show that it was Russia that was blocking Ukrainian exports. It’s not that Ukraine does not want to supply food to the markets. That is why we are looking for alternative routes.”

However, Moscow writes euronews, habitually denies the accusations against him, shifting responsibility for disruptions in supplies to Kyiv. Undoubtedly, it will be difficult to complete the task from a technical point of view, since the Ukrainian railway is incompatible with most of the European transport system. But the loss of Ukrainian grain will have catastrophic consequences for the world market.

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