Russian grain trucks stuck near main export port due to coronavirus -IFX
Trucks with up to 4,500 tonnes of Russian grain are stuck at the entry to Russia’s main export port of Novorossiisk on the Black Sea due to a regime set up by regional officials amid the coronavirus outbreak, Interfax news agency reported on Friday.
Russia is the world’s largest wheat exporter, which has so far reported 4,149 cases of the virus and 34 deaths, far fewer than some major western European countries.
There are 173 trucks at the entrance to the Novorossiisk port, and officials are not allowing drivers to pass into the port, Interfax quoted Denis Demenkov, the head of NKHP, one of the grain terminals in the port, as saying.
“They are required to have a pass for the entry. Drivers say they have applied for the passes, but have not yet received them,” Demenkov told Interfax. The delay with transportation of grain by trucks may result in losses for exporters, he added.
The deep-water port of Novorossiisk, part of Russia’s southern Krasnodar region, is home to several grain terminals, which supply Russian grain to foreign markets.
Russia has not imposed tough restrictions on grain exports, but has set an export quota at 7 million tonnes for April-June, broadly in line with what the global market expected from the country for that period.
However, President Vladimir Putin said in a televised speech on Thursday that regional governors should develop measures to fight the coronavirus for themselves depending on the situation in their region.
The Krasnodar regions previously said that special permits would be required for the residents to move within its territory during the quarantine. They are individual and are supposed to be issued by local officials upon request.
The administration of the city of Novorossiisk declined to comment when asked by Interfax, while the administration of the Krasnodar region told the news agency “the situation is okay”.