KYIV, Feb 23 – Ukraine’s agricultural production will drop this year due to contamination of the farmland with landmines.

More than 2.6 million hectares of Ukraine’s agricultural lands need to be cleared from unexploded ordnance, said Ukraine’s First Deputy Prime Minister and Economy Minister Yulia Svyrydenko.

“The demining programme may take many years, but we must begin it now,” Svyrydenko said.

At the same time, she emphasised that Ukraine is willing to extend the Black Sea grain deal and actively use the European routes to boost its grain exports.

As of the beginning of this month, Ukrainian farmers harvested 53.2 million tons of grain and legumes from last year’s harvest from 97 per cent of the sowed areas.

Ukraine, once known as a breadbasket of Europe, has about 42.8 million hectares of high-quality farmland suitable for growing grain and raising livestock.


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