Refused by buyer, first Ukraine grain vessel docks in Türkiye

The Sierra Leone-flagged cargo ship Razoni sails under Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge after being inspected in Istanbul, Türkiye, on Aug 3, 2022. (EMRAH GUREL / AP)

ISTANBUL – The first grain ship to depart from Ukraine under a UN-brokered deal docked in Türkiye on Thursday after 11 days at sea, Refinitiv data showed, and the ship's agent in Türkiye said it would continue to Egypt after unloading part of its cargo.

The Razoni set sail from Ukraine's Odesa port on Aug 1 under a deal brokered by the United Nations and Türkiye between Russia and Ukraine. Eleven other ships have left since then.

The Razoni set sail from Ukraine's Odesa port on Aug 1 under a deal brokered by the UN and Türkiye between Russia and Ukraine. Eleven other ships have left since then

While the Razoni was initially headed to Lebanon's Tripoli, Ukraine's embassy in the country said the buyer had refused delivery due to a five-month delay and the ship was looking for a new customer.

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The ship, which had since been at anchor off Türkiye's southern coast, entered the port in Mersin Thursday afternoon, Refinitiv ship tracker data showed.

Kadir Soyer, agency director at Mersin-based shipping agent Toros, said the ship would offload 1,500 tons of corn in Türkiye and later continue to Egypt with the rest of its 26,527-ton load.

"1,500 tons will be offloaded in Mersin and the rest will go to Egypt," he told Reuters via phone.

Toros was only handling the docking and offloading in Türkiye and would not be involved in the ship's trip to Egypt, he said.

West urged to facilitate Russian grain export

Moscow on Thursday asked Western countries to contribute to the full implementation of the Istanbul grain deal, which includes the export of Russian food and fertilizers.

The package of agreements not only allows grain export from three Ukrainian ports but also stipulates the promotion of Russian food and fertilizers on global markets, which is not implemented, said Ivan Nechaev, deputy director of the Information and Press Department of the Russian Foreign Ministry.

READ MORE: Two more grain ships sail from Ukraine, Türkiye says

In this file photo taken on June 7, 2022, a worker straightens a large bag in a grain processing shop of Chyorny Khleb ("Black Bread") enterprise in the village of Khatmanovo in the Tula region some 150 kilometers outside Moscow. (YURI KADOBNOV / AFP)

"We expect that all provisions of the food agreements will be implemented in full and Western countries will create the necessary conditions for access of Russian fertilizers and food to global markets," Nechaev told a briefing.

"Unfortunately, not a single vessel with (Ukrainian) grain has yet reached the shores of starving countries in Africa or South Asia. They went mainly to Western ports," Nechaev told reporters.