Concerns over state strategic reserves

Romania has enough reserves in case of a global food crisis.

Russia’s unprovoked and illegal invasion of Ukraine has been limping from a military point of view. The situation risks aggravating and prolonging the suffering of the aggressed Ukrainian people. On the other hand, the invasion maintains unaltered its potential to create dangerous imbalances and produce dramatic consequences in terms of global energy and food security. In a warning issued at the World Economic Forum in Davos, the Executive Director of the UN World Food Program, David Beasley, described Russia’s blockade of Ukraine’s ports as a declaration of war against world food security. The problem is not just that Ukraine’s invasion has to a large extent worsened the crisis of the global cost of living, Beasley said, but the biggest fear is that Russia is deliberately using food supplies as an instrument in war.

David Beasley warned that the result of the blockade imposed by Russia on Ukraine’s ports could be global famine. The Polish authorities have also accused Russia of trying to sabotage Ukrainian crops in order to generate a food crisis that will have devastating effects in North Africa and will subsequently generate consecutive waves of migration. A possible crisis of food and other goods at planetary level also concerns the authorities in Bucharest. The president of the National Administration of State Reserves and Special Issues, Georgian Pop, told Radio Romania that the state’s strategic reserves will be increased and diversified, given the war in Ukraine and a possible food crisis. For exceptional circumstances, the state stores food, fuel, antibiotics and other products, and lately products have been taken out from the national reserve to help the Ukrainians.

Romania has learned something from the pandemic, and the stocks are substantial, Georgian Pop has given assurances: „I’m telling you in the most responsible way that we have no problems at the moment and I’m asking the population to stay calm. Stocks are substantial. But, indeed, we’ve learnt our lessons from the COVID pandemic and the war in Ukraine, therefore we’re diversifying the products in stock. Why? Because we have seen, for example, in Ukraine what products an affected population needs at a time of crisis. We’ve looked at what we have and we’re going to add more products to that list.”

In another development, the Romanian FM Bogdan Aurescu has recently called for a greater international effort to create a corridor, which would also have a sea component, for the transport of products from Ukraine, especially cereals. According to Bogdan Aurescu, in the context of the conflict in Ukraine, Constanta became the first port in terms of cereals export and the capitalization of its potential has a strategic relevance. (Ştefan Stoica, Radio Romania International)