According to UN chief’s statement, it is crucial to make sure that food & fertiliser from Russia & Ukraine can continue to reach underdeveloped nations “smoothly, efficiently, and at scale.”

The UN Secretary-General stated on Friday that the food and fertilizer export deals that were mediated with Russia and Ukraine last year have played a “indispensable role” in promoting global food security and must continue.

In a statement released by his deputy spokesperson, António Guterres reaffirmed “the importance of full and continued implementation” of the agreements made in Istanbul last July, including the Memorandum of Understanding on Fertilizer Exports with Moscow and the Black Sea Initiative, which ensures the safe passage of Ukrainian grain and foodstuffs to international markets.

Russia is still considering whether it will stay in the agreement reached with Ukraine and managed by the UN, Turkey, and itself after the deadline of July 17th. The UN has been in charge of negotiating to ensure the continuation of the 60-day extension, which Russia agreed to in May of last year.

The agreement is administered by a Joint Coordination Centre in Istanbul with representatives from all parties, but in recent weeks, vessel inspections and shipping movements have both decreased.

According to the UN chief’s statement, it is crucial to make sure that food and fertiliser from Russia and Ukraine can continue to reach underdeveloped nations “smoothly, efficiently, and at scale.”

These export deals show, he said, “what the world can do when it puts its mind to the great challenges of our time,” which is an all-too-rare demonstration.

Together, the agreements are causing a steady decline in food prices worldwide, which are currently more than 23% lower than record highs reached in March of last year.

Maximo Torero, the head economist for the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, stated earlier on Friday that the decision to allow grain to leave Ukrainian ports had enabled the delivery of 32 million tonnes, a large portion of which was used to meet the needs of developing countries and provide food aid for the World Food Programme (WFP).

The date of the renewal would be “critical because it’s when the harvest starts,” he said. We sincerely hope that it will be renewed; however, if it is not, we will see a spike in the cost of cereal commodities.

At a time when 258 million people in 58 countries are going hungry, the UN said in a note to correspondents last week that the agreements were “a lifeline for global food security.”

In his statement on Friday, the Deputy Spokesperson, Farhan Haq, stated that “the Secretary-General and his team remain fully committed to building on the progress already made.” They are also in constant contact with a variety of stakeholders in this regard.

The Secretary-General urged all parties involved to give global food security top priority.