South American countries promote elimination of fertilizer from Russian sanctions

São Paulo — Six South American countries are proposing to exclude fertilizer from sanctions on Russia, the world’s major producer, which has been cut off by the invasion of Ukraine, Brazil’s Agriculture Minister Teresa Christina Diaz said Thursday. Told to.

She said Brazil has secured the support of Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay, and Uruguay for proposals to exclude fertilizer products submitted to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Brazil, an agricultural powerhouse, is the world’s largest importer of fertilizers and argues that nutrients in crops such as food should not be subject to sanctions.

Brazil relies on imports for 85% of the fertilizer needed for grains. More than one-fifth of imports, a total of 9 million tonnes from Russia in 2021.

Expected to speak with FAO’s Secretary of State Qu Dongyu, Diaz points out that fertilizer shortages can cause food inflation and compromise food security, finding a global solution to this problem. I called on each country.

She hopes to get sufficient support from FAO to convince other UN member states to support the proposal.

“World food inflation is a concern for all countries,” Diaz said in a recent interview.

Even before the war in Ukraine, the global supply of fertilizers, especially potash, had already been reduced after the United States approved another major producer, Belarus.

As part of Brazil’s efforts to secure supply, Diaz and Brazilian corporate representatives will travel next week to Canada, where Nutrien, the world’s largest producer of potash, is based.

Russia is Brazil’s major source of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium NPK fertilizer mixtures, while Canada is Brazil’s major source of potash used to increase yields.

Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro visited Moscow a few days before the invasion of Ukraine to discuss Russia’s fertilizer supply and the sale of Brazilian beef.

Roberto Samora