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Ukrainian ports gradually opening up as three more ships loaded with food set to depart

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Three more ships will depart Black Sea ports loaded with food on Friday morning under a grain deal brokered by the United Nations and Turkey, officials announced.

Two of the ships will leave the Chernomorsk port and another will leave a port in Odesa carrying a combined total of more than 58,000 tons of corn.

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“We hope for the professionalism of all involved,” Ukrainian Minister of Infrastructure Alexander Kubrakov wrote on Facebook.

Under the deal that officials reached on July 22, ships are allowed to leave the ports of Odesa, Chernomorsk and Yuzhny with grain, corn and related food.

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The agreement appeared to be in peril on July 23 when Russia launched a series of missile strikes at Ukraine’s coastline, but the first ship with 26,000 tons of corn left this week.

Russia’s February invasion of Ukraine has squeezed food prices around the world as both countries are key players in the global commodities market.

The United Nations’ FAO Food Price Index, which reflects the international prices of a basket of food commodities, was up 23% in June compared to the same time last year.

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