First vessel carrying grain leaves Ukrainian deep-sea port of Odesa

1 Aug 2022 | Masha Belikova

The first vessel carrying Ukrainian grain left the port of Odesa Monday, just over a week after an agreement was signed on unblocking Ukraine's deep-sea ports and after three months of talks and discussions, Ukraine's ministry of infrastructure said in an official notice.

The vessel Razoni, which is carrying 26,000 mt of Ukrainian corn and is headed to the port of Tripoli, Lebanon under the Sierra-Leone flag, left from the Novolog terminal, as it had been scheduled to do prior to the war, according to line-up data.

According to the line-up, the exporter was said to be Grainexpo, while market sources said the cargo belongs to VA Intertrading.

"In the ports of greater Odesa, there are 16 more ships waiting their turn. These are vessels that have been blocked since the beginning of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine," Oleksandr Kubrakov, Ukraine's minister of infrastructure said in a note.

"At the same time, we will receive applications for the arrival of new vessels for loading agricultural products,” he said.

The ports include Odesa itself, Chornomorsk and Pivdennyi.

The minister added that in the coming weeks, Ukraine plans to reach full capacity for transshipment of agricultural products, with the help of international partners.

The Razoni's departure comes a week after an agreement was signed between Ukraine, Turkey, and the UN about the de-blocking of the ports, while a mirror agreement was also signed with Russia, Turkey and the UN.

For the last week, the market has been on pause waiting for vessels to start to move, especially as buyers were hoping that this might put additional pressure on prices if the initiative is successful, while trade sources familiar with the situation said there were still some issues to be solved.