Black Sea grain corridor stalled for two days, UN confirms
Photo via EPA

No vessels involved in Ukrainian grain shipments through the Black Sea have been inspected in the last two days, the United Nations confirmed late on Monday.

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The Joint Coordination Centre (JCC), which checks vessels within the Black Sea grain initiative, "conducted no inspections" on May 7 and 8, the office of the UN coordinator of the grain deal said in a statement.

"Since 1 May, the JCC inspection rate has dropped significantly to an average of 2.9 completed inspections daily," it noted.

Black Sea grain corridor stalled for two days, UN confirms
Data via UN

The UN assured it was working closely with the parties involved "to facilitate movements and inspections of inbound and outbound vessels… while discussions for the future of the Initiative continue."

According to Ukraine’s ministry of communities, territories and infrastructure, 90 vessels were awaiting inspection in Turkish territorial waters by May 8, of which 62 were ships undergoing loading.

Exports of Ukrainian agricultural products via the grain corridor in April were among the lowest on record, amounting to just 2.8 million tonnes, with only 65 ships with food having been able to leave Odesa ports in April.

The grain deal, struck in July 2022, provided for limited exports of Ukrainian grain through three Black Sea ports, which had been blocked since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

Russia has claimed that the current grain deal does not guarantee its agricultural exports, allegedly blocked by Western sanctions in response to its aggression against Ukraine, and is threatening to quit the deal on 18 May, when it is set to expire.