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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky at the International Food Safety Summit in Kyiv


The EU is providing Ukraine with €50 million to rebuild and expand its ports damaged by Russian attacks. "Improved port capacities will accelerate the export of food and other goods that Ukraine supplies to global markets," said a letter from European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

"Despite the war, Ukraine continues to feed the world"

"Over time, our investments should allow Ukraine's ports to return to pre-war export volumes," it added. On Platform X, formerly Twitter, von der Leyen wrote about the letter published there: "Despite the war, Ukraine continues to feed the world. You can count on the EU in these efforts." The €50 million pledge coincided with an international food safety summit in the Ukrainian capital Kyiv.

According to President Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine needs more air defense systems to protect its grain export routes and regions bordering Russia. "There is a deficit in air defense – it's no secret," Zelensky said in a speech at the summit in Kyiv.

Previously, five people had been injured in what Ukraine said was the largest Russian drone attack to date. Kiev hopes to remedy its lack of anti-aircraft systems through new supplies from partners and the increase in its own production capacities. "At this stage, I can't say exactly what we are producing where, but there is progress," Zelensky said.

Ukraine, which has been at war with neighboring Russia since Russia's invasion in February 2022, is one of the world's largest grain exporters. In particular, the Russian blockade of its Black Sea ports has made it much more difficult for Ukraine to bring its products to international markets. As a key interface to the international export business, Russia's army has also repeatedly targeted the infrastructure of Ukrainian ports.