Since 1 August last year, 689 vessels carrying 19.1 million tons of Ukrainian agricultural products to countries in Africa, Asia, and Europe have left the ports of Greater Odesa. This figure would be over 28 million tons if the humanitarian maritime corridor operated steadily.
Dmytro Barynov, the deputy head of the state-owned Ukrainian Seaports Authority (USPA), stated this during the expert discussion "The Conditions for the Success of the Solidarity Lanes," the CFTS portal reports, citing the USPA.
Barynov emphasized that because of the limited operations of Ukrainian seaports caused by the Russian military aggression, the plan for 2023 is to focus the primary attention on further development of the Danube cluster as the main maritime route for Ukraine’s exports and imports.
"The second, no less important, the direction we see is the continuation of the operation of the Black Sea ‘grain corridor.’ Because the Russian Federation is blocking the operations of the JCC, 118 vessels (96 bound for Ukrainian ports to be loaded with agricultural products and 22 already loaded) were waiting for inspection in Turkish territorial waters as of 31 January," he said.
According to him, only 20 inspections took place last week, compared with the minimum required 84.
"The European Commission’s ‘Solidarity Lanes’ initiative and the results of its implementation, thanks to the use of seaports in European maritime states, railways, and other modes of transport, have become alternative transport corridors for Ukraine," the deputy head of the USPA said.