Türkiye will continue ‘intense’ efforts for resumption of Black Sea grain deal: President Erdogan

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin speak over phone, discuss bilateral ties, Black Sea grain deal
Diyar Guldogan |
02.08.2023 – Update : 03.08.2023

Türkiye will continue to carry out “intense” efforts and diplomacy for the resumption of the Black Sea grain deal, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan told his Russian counterpart on Wednesday.

In a phone call, they also agreed on Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit to Türkiye, said a statement from Türkiye’s Communications Directorate.

Underlining the importance of the Black Sea grain deal, which he regards as a “bridge of peace,” Erdogan stressed that during the Russia-Ukraine war, steps that may escalate tension should not be taken.

Erdogan said that the long-term suspension of the Black Sea Initiative will not benefit anyone, adding that the low-income countries in need of grain will suffer the most.

He emphasized that grain prices, which decreased by 23% during the deal implementation period, have increased by 15% in the last two weeks, the statement said.

On July 17, Russia suspended its participation in the deal, which it signed last July along with Türkiye, the UN, and Ukraine to resume grain exports from three Ukrainian Black Sea ports paused after the Russia-Ukraine war began in February. But even when renewing the deal in previous months, Moscow has complained that the Russian part of the agreement was not being implemented.

Erdogan also thanked Putin for sending two amphibious firefighting aircraft for Türkiye’s fight against wildfires.

He voiced his pleasure over Russian tourists’ increasing interest in Türkiye and expressed hope that through collective efforts, a record will be broken in tourism this year, the statement said.