5.5 million tonnes of agricultural produce has been exported from three Black Sea ports in Ukraine over the past two months, according to the country’s minister for infrastructure.

3.8 million tonnes of produce was shipped during September, in addition to the 1.7 million tonnes exported in August.

Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov said that under the Black Sea Grain Initiative, a deal between Ukraine and Russia brokered by Turkey and the United Nations (UN), 241 ships of produce have left the ports.

111 vessels loaded with 2.1 million tonnes of produce sailed from Chornomorsk port, 74 ships carrying 1.5 million tonnes departed from Odesa, while 56 vessels with 1.9 million tonnes on board left Pivdennyi.

235 vessels arrived into the ports for loading over the two-month timeframe.

Image: Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine

The Ukrainian minister said that 113 of the vessels travelled to Asia and 95 sailed to Europe.

A further 33 vessels were destined for Africa carrying 830,000 tonnes of produce; 17 of the ships went to Egypt with 383,500 tonnes of produce.

58% of the total volume of exported corn went to Europe and almost 70% of the wheat was sent to Africa and Asia.

Seven of the shipment were sent to Bangladesh, Yemen, Afghanistan and Lebanon which are all “on the brink of famine”.

The Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine said that four ships loaded with 121,000 tonnes of wheat were sent to Ethopia, Yemen and Afghanistan under the United Nations (UN) World Food Programme (WFP).

A fifth vessel is due to arrive in Chornomorsk port and be loaded with 30,000 tonnes of wheat for Somalia “in the near future”.

“This is important not only for countries facing hunger but for the entire world. Such export volumes positively affect the dynamics of food prices”, Kubrakov said on Twitter.