UN Warns Of Global Food Shortages Soon Due To War In Ukraine

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  The United Nations has warned that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine could cause global food shortages in the coming months.   Secretary-General António Guterres said the war had worsened food insecurity in poorer nations due to rising prices.   Speaking Wednesday in New York, Mr. Guterres said the world could face famines that last for years if Ukrainian exports are not restored to pre-war levels.    «First, we must urgently reduce the pressure on markets by increasing supplies of food and fertilisers. There should be no restriction on exports and surpluses must be made available to those most in need. But let’s be clear, there is no effective solution to the food crisis without reintegrating Ukraine’s food production as well as the food and fertiliser produced by Russia and Belarus into world markets, despite the war,» he declared.    Mr. Guterres added that «Russia must permit the safe and secure export of grains stored in Ukrainian ports,» noting that «alternative transportation routes can be explored even if we know that by itself, they will not be enough to solve the problem.»    The conflict has cut-off supplies from Ukraine’s ports, which once exported vast amounts of sunflower oil and cereals such as maize and wheat.   This has reduced the global supply and caused the price of alternatives to soar.    According to the UN, global food prices are almost 30% higher than the same time last year.   Last month, the World Bank warned that the war in Ukraine has dealt a major shock to commodity markets, altering global patterns of trade, production, and consumption in ways that will keep prices at historically high levels through the end of 2024.