Putin accuses Europe of blocking Russian fertilizer donations to poor countries, H24info

President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday accused the EU of blocking the donation of 300,000 tons of Russian fertilizer to the countries that need it most, at a time when Moscow complains of obstacles to exports from the West.

“The height of cynicism is that even our offer (…) to transfer free of charge 300,000 tonnes of Russian fertilizers blocked in European ports due to sanctions to countries that need it still remains unanswered,” Putin lamented. during a ceremony for the presentation of credentials to some twenty ambassadors.

“It’s clear: they don’t want to let our businesses make money,” he said. Before adding: “But we want to give (these tons of fertilizer) free to countries in need,” he argued.

Russia, a world grain power, cannot sell its production and its fertilizers because of Western sanctions affecting the financial and logistics sectors in particular.

In 2021, Russia was the largest exporter of nitrogen fertilizers and the second largest supplier of potassium and phosphorus fertilizers, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).

On Tuesday, Vladimir Putin again castigated “illegitimate sanctions” taken by certain Western countries “to strengthen their position” which, according to him, have “negative consequences on themselves” but also “on totally innocent States ( who) suffer from such a policy, first and foremost the developing and poorest countries,” he said.

Lire aussi. Guerre en Ukraine : la Russie n’est «pas pressée», affirme Poutine

According to him, it is the countries in Africa, South Asia and Latin America that “have been mainly affected by Western restrictions on the supply of Russian energy, food and fertilizers to world markets”.

These statements come at a time when Moscow is increasingly contesting two agreements concluded in July in Istanbul allowing the export of wheat and corn from Ukraine despite the Russian offensive, but also, in theory, exports from Moscow which have been affected by Western sanctions.

The Kremlin claims in particular that most Ukrainian food products go to European countries, which kyiv denies.

Russian criticism of the Istanbul deals is raising fears that Ukrainian exports will be further hampered, as the conflict with kyiv raises concerns for global food security amid widespread price hikes in markets.

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