Ukraine has declared martial law after Russia captured three Ukrainian vessels and their crew in a move that some say could be interpreted as a de-facto blockade on Ukraine’s ports on the Azov Sea, and the beginnings of an invasion.
Although these moves have not yet had a negative effect on grain exports through the Azov Sea, continued stability is uncertain, according to Maksyn Martyniuk, Ukraine’s acting agriculture minister.
Currently buyers are refusing Ukrainian grain shipments that are routed through the Azov Sea, however, the effect on trade is still negligible as only between 4 and 5 percent of the country’s grain moves through that region.
If it is found that exports cannot move freely through the Azov ports, including Mariupol and Berdyansk, grain shipments will be diverted to the Black Sea.
Lynda Kiernan is Editor with HighQuest Group Media and of the Oilseed & Grain News. If you would like to submit a contribution for consideration, please contact Ms. Kiernan at firstname.lastname@example.org.