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UN reportedly proposes 4-point plan to Russia to revive grain deal

September 8, 2023 at 7:57 pm

United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Antonio Guterres speaks during a press conference in Johannesburg, South Africa on August 24, 2023 [Murat Özgür Güvendik/Anadolu Agency]

UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, proposed a four-point plan to revive the Black Sea grain deal, German daily, Bild, reported on Friday.

Guterres detailed his plan in a letter he sent to Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, on 28 August, the daily said, citing diplomatic sources, Anadolu Agency reports.

The plan foresees granting SWIFT access to a subsidiary of the Russian Agricultural Bank (RAB) and allowing Russian ships to dock at European ports if they only transport food or fertiliser products, according to the report.

Guterres also suggested that the UN can support an insurance facility for Russian cargo ships and offered assistance for the return of the frozen assets of the Russian fertiliser producers, the daily reported.

READ: Russia suspends Black Sea grain deal

“The United Nations will work with the relevant national authorities and the EU authorities on the basis of these,” he reportedly said.

In return, Guterres asked Russia to restore to the Black Sea grain deal, which was signed by Kyiv and Moscow last year.

Russia had refused to extend the grain deal in July, complaining that the West has not met its obligations, and that there were still restrictions on its own food and fertiliser exports. Moscow particularly criticised the restrictions on payments, logistics and insurance.

Earlier on Wednesday, the Russian Foreign Ministry confirmed that there were some new proposals from the UN to restore the grain deal, but underlined that these proposals were not sufficient enough to normalise the agricultural exports.

READ: Russia Putin says there will be no new grain deal during his talks with Erdogan