USAID administrator Samantha Power said the US is developing a back-up plan to export Ukrainian grain from Ukraine. After Russia defiantly broke its promise not to attack Ukraine's ports to ensure food security, plan B became urgent and necessary.
"Plan B involves road and rail and river and sending in barges and adjusting the rail systems so that they're better aligned with those in Europe so that the exports can move out more quickly," Samantha Power.
The USAID administrator made her statement during her tour of the dry regions of Kenya and Somalia, which are entirely dependent on Ukrainian grain.
We remind you that on July 22, Russia signed an agreement with Turkey and the UN on the import of Ukrainian grain, which includes a clause on the resumption of the security of Ukrainian ports and international ships with food. Less than a day later, Russia fired missiles at the port of Odesa, which had Ukrainian grain for export. Thus, Russia showed its attitude to all international treaties and confirmed the worthlessness of its word.
"We have been living the contingency plan because there's no way you can trust anything that Vladimir Putin says," Power commented on the Russian shelling of a Ukrainian port.
Samantha Power said more than 50% of Somalia's grain exports come from Ukraine. And today, in the very port where Russia fired rockets on July 23, there are more than 20 million m³ of grain and corn for export. Unblocking the port is a condition not only to prevent a global food crisis but also to reduce the price of food on the world market, Power said.
"Even the specter of this deal working and being enforced and the grains leaving the port brought prices down, even in a 24-hour period," she said. "So, more supply with the same amount of demand is going to mean lower prices."