UN Warns of Global Consequences of Russia—Ukraine Conflict

Ukraine-Russia war poses new threat to global food security: Hunger was slowing then COVID-19 hit; now the war in Ukraine will have a heavy impact on availability of food, UN warns. | Photo: Twitter @AndyVermaut

The global food price index is at its highest level ever and it is urgent to do everything possible to avoid a hurricane of hunger and the collapse of the international food system, the UN Secretary General stressed.

As the war continues in Ukraine, a sword of Damocles hangs over the global economy, especially in the developing world as a consequence of the conflict, UN Secretary-General António Guterres warned today.

In statements to the press accredited to the United Nations, he recalled that Russia and Ukraine are the source of numerous resources for states around the world. Both possess more than half of the world’s sunflower oil supply and about 30 percent of the world’s wheat, he stressed.

Ukraine alone provides more than half of the World Food Program’s wheat supply, the Portuguese diplomat said. Due to the ongoing conflict in that territory, he added, the prices of food, fuel, and fertilizers are soaring, while supply chains are disrupted.Transportation costs and delays for imported goods, when available, are at record levels, he added.

Even before the conflict, developing countries were struggling to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic with record inflation, rising interest rates and looming debt burdens, the headline recalled.

But their ability to respond has now been wiped out by exponential increases in the cost of financing, he warned, all of which is hurting the poorest and planting the seeds of political instability and unrest around the world.

Grain prices have already surpassed those at the beginning of the Arab Spring and the food riots recorded from 2007 to 2008, he said.

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