At the signing ceremony, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the grain deal would not only rescue billions from famine, but would also ease global food inflation.

Erdogan said the implementation of the deal will be carried out by a joint coordination centre in Istanbul.
Erdogan said the implementation of the deal will be carried out by a joint coordination centre in Istanbul. (AA)

Türkiye, UN, Russia and Ukraine have signed a deal in Istanbul to resume exports of grain through the Black Sea.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and Ukrainian Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov signed separate deals with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar, in Dolmabahce Palace on Friday.

The ceremony was witnessed by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Ahead of signing the historic grain agreement, President Erdogan said: "We will be undertaking a very important step preventing the threat of hunger that affects billions."

"It gives us great pride to be a part of helping solve this food crisis," Erdogan added. 

The deal would not only rescue billions from famine, but would also ease global food inflation, Erdogan said.

He said the implementation of the grain deal will be carried out by a joint coordination centre in Istanbul.

Guterres said: "Today there is a beacon in the Black Sea; a beacon of hope; a beacon of possibility; a beacon of relief in a world that needs it more than anything."

He added that this initiative must be fully implemented and that it has taken immense effort and weeks of work from all sides to achieve this deal. 

Guterres thanked all those who helped make the deal happen.

"To our hosts and President Erdogan and the government of Türkiye, your facilitation and persistence have been essential through every step of the process," he said.

The deal was reached with Russia to allow the flow of grain from Ukraine, where some 20 million tonnes of grain is stuck. 

READ MORE: Ukraine grain exports deal to be signed soon – Turkish President

Easing global food crisis

Ankara and the UN have been working on a plan that would enable Ukraine to export millions of grain stockpiles that have been stuck in Ukraine’s Black Sea ports due to the conflict — a move that could ease a global food crisis that has sent wheat and other grain prices soaring.

Last week, the sides met in Istanbul, reaching a tentative agreement on the plan. The plan foresees joint controls of ships as they leave and arrive at Black Sea ports and a mechanism to ensure the safety of the transfer routes, Turkish officials said.

A coordination centre for the shipping of exports would be established in Istanbul and would include UN, Turkish, Russian and Ukrainian officials.

READ MORE: How Türkiye emerged as a reliable mediator in the Ukraine-Russia conflict