The Russian Embassy in Ghana has debunked widespread reports that the current food crisis on the global market, especially in the agriculture sector, is due to the invasion of Ukraine by the European nation.
In a circular issued by the Embassy on micro-blogging site, Twitter on Tuesday, April 19, 2022, it described the reports as one that “commonly lack substantial analysis.”
In a series of tweets sighted by Ashantibiz, the Russian Embassy in Ghana linked the crisis in the global agriculture market to the coronavirus pandemic and related disturbances to the global economy.
“The current situation in the food markets is not a result of two months of this year  but a steady trend of at least two years [2020-2021]. Food prices have started rising in mid-2020 and reached an all time high in February 2022,” the circular pointed out.
“This is a real market shock caused by high demand and rising prices on food, raw materials and transportation service including freight in the post COVID-19 recovery period,” it added.
The Embassy said data from the stock exchange markets further corroborates that the current situation in the global food markets is not due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
“The Russia Federation as a responsible participant of the global food market intends to continue to fulfil its obligations under international commitments in terms of exports deliveries of agricultural products such as fertilizers, energy and other vital products,” portions of the circular read.
“We are deeply concerned about a possible food crisis and are well aware of the importance of supplying essential goods for the social-economic development of Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East,” it added.
Meanwhile, at the the Bank of Ghana’s 105th Monetary Policy Committee held in March this year, Governor of the Bank, Dr. Ernesst Addison said, “The Russia-Ukraine war is likely to impact negatively on Ghana’s external sector, particularly in the area of some key construction and agricultural commodities.”
He noted, “In recent past, an average of about 2.5 percent of Ghana’s total non-oil imports have originated from Russia and Ukraine and around 0.4 percent of Ghana’s total exports are destined to Russia and Ukraine.”
The main import items from Russia are grains, wheat flour, and fertilizers.
“In 2021, around 28.7 percent of Ghana’s grain imports came from Russia and for the first two months of 2022, grain imports from Russia accounted for 31.2 percent of the total grain imports and about 50.0 percent and 39.2 percent of flour and fertilizer imports respectively, were sourced from Russia in the first two months of this year ,” Dr. Addison added.
However, Ghana’s main exports to Russia are cocoa beans which accounted for 0.2 percent of total cocoa exports.
Also, Ghana’s major imports from Ukraine are iron ore and steel which accounted for over 60 percent of the total iron ore and steel imports.
“As a result of this fact, the construction industry will likely face some challenges in terms of supply disruptions and prices of steel and iron ore imports,” the BoG Governor earlier said.