Four ships carrying food products departed from Ukraine’s Black Sea ports on Sunday as part of a deal to unblock the country’s sea exports, Ukrainian and Turkish officials said.
The four bulk carriers were loaded with more than 160,000 tons of maize and other foodstuffs.
The resumption of grain exports is overseen by a Joint Coordination Center (JCC) in Istanbul, which is home to Russian, Ukrainian, Turkish and UN personnel.
The UN and Turkey reached an agreement last month following UN warnings of possible famine outbreaks in parts of the world following a halt in grain shipments from Ukraine, which put stocks under pressure and prices skyrocketed. .
Before the invasion, Russia and Ukraine together accounted for nearly a third of global wheat exports.
The JCC said late Saturday that it had authorized the departure of a total of five new ships through the Black Sea corridor: four ships departing from Chornomorsk and Odessa carrying 161,084 tons of products and one inbound.
The ships that have left Ukrainian ports include Glory, with a cargo of 66,000 tons of maize en route to Istanbul, and Riva Wind, loaded with 44,000 tons of maize, en route to Turkey’s Iskenderun, the Turkish defense ministry said.
It said the other two ships leaving Ukraine were Star Helena, carrying 45,000 tons of flour bound for China, and Mustafa Necati, carrying 6,000 tons of sunflower oil bound for Italy.
The first four ships left Ukraine last week under the agreement.