Turkey wants to extend grains deal by 120 days – Defense Minister

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Turkey will continue talks to extend a deal allowing grain to be shipped from Ukrainian Black Sea ports for 120 days instead of 60, Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said on Wednesday.

“We started negotiations according to the initial version of the agreement. The continuation of the agreement is important. We will continue our contacts (on its extension) for 120 days instead of two months,” Akar was quoted as saying in a Defense Ministry statement.

The parties to the deal will assess and decide on a further extension of the deal, Akar said, adding that Ankara expected a positive outcome.

Since Russia and Ukraine signed the UN-backed Black Sea Grain Initiative in Turkey on July 22, millions of tons of grain and other food products have been exported from Ukrainian ports, helping to reduce global food prices from record highs.

During the talks, Russia proposed to renew the agreement for 60 days, half the term of the previous renewal, but Ukraine rejected it.

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