Senior representatives of the United States, the European Union, the Republic of Moldova, Ukraine and Romania are discussing alternative routes for grain shipments from Ukraine in Galați on Friday, according to the US Embassy in Bucharest, which conveys support for “ensuring the uninterrupted continuity of Ukrainian grain exports”. The visit also includes an analysis of the situation in the port of Galati.
The press conference on Ukrainian agricultural exports in the framework of the EU-Ukraine solidarity corridor will be attended by Transport Minister Sorin Grindeanu, Jim O’Brien, who heads the U.S. Sanctions Coordinator, Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov, Magda Kopczynska – Director for Water Transport at the Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport, representatives of the European Commission and Moldovan Agriculture Minister Vladimir Bolea, romanian news agency – Agerpres.ro reports.
The meeting takes place in the context that despite the modernization works of the Port of Galati last year there is no possibility of smooth export of Ukrainian grain. Sources consulted explained that out of the four kilometres of modernised railway line to the Port of Galati, only a few kilometres are useful, at least for the time being, to a nearby intermodal terminal from where Ukrainian grain and industrial products leave. But the modernisation work is welcome. Then, as for the actual shipments of grain from the port onto barges, they amount to just a few trains since operations started. The reason for this would be the low capacity of river barges to transport grain on the Danube. Heavy congestion can also be encountered in the port of Constanta where trains bringing in grain are forced to wait for days for goods to be transhipped onto transport vessels.
US Embassy: Unity prevails
“In the face of adversity, unity prevails. In a crucial meeting in Galati, Romania, Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova, the European Commission and the United States will join forces in the wake of Russia’s harsh exit from the Black Sea Grain Initiative,” the US Embassy said in the announcement.
Thus, the meeting will also express gratitude to Romania “for its unwavering efforts in supporting Ukrainian grain exports”.
“Despite Russia’s ruthless destruction of Ukrainian port infrastructure and grain warehouses, we remain committed to ensuring the uninterrupted continuation of Ukrainian grain exports to meet global demand,” the embassy said.
The subject of the talks will be improving alternative transport routes for Ukrainian grain.
“Working together, we are determined to strengthen and diversify alternative routes for grain exports by rail, road and sea, ensuring Ukraine’s essential role in the global food market,” the source adds, denouncing the Kremlin for “weaponising food and jeopardising global food security”.
“The United States stands firmly with Ukraine, pledging continued support and assistance to help Ukraine overcome challenges and promote prosperity in the region,” the US Embassy adds.