Russia donates 25,000 tonnes of wheat to Cuba
HAVANA, Dec 25. The Russian government has donated 25,000 tons of wheat to Cuba, which is expected to arrive on the island in the last days of this year and in early 2023.According to the Latin Press state agency, the authorities of the Eurasian giant have allocated more than 800 million rubles (about 11 million 576 749 US dollars) to the Ministry of Emergencies for the purchase of wheat and its shipment to Havana.
A Russian government decree specifies that the delivery will be in the form of humanitarian aid and will arrive by sea.
469 million rubles (about 6.7 million US dollars) will be allocated from the state budget for the purchase of wheat, and another 300 million for the transfer of goods to Cuban ports.
Russia is a powerful ally of the Cuban regime, which it has supported in times of crisis with humanitarian aid shipments to minimize social discontent following the July 11 protests and the health crisis linked to the coronavirus pandemic.
At the end of November, Miguel Díaz-Canel announced that during his last visit to Russia, the importance of increasing Russian investment projects on the island had been assessed “as well as the provision of food and inputs for its production”.
In October, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Chernychenko announced that his government was considering regularly sending supplies such as oil to the island and derivatives, as well as fertilizers and wheat.
According to the Russian official, Havana has asked the government of Vladimir Putin to send these supplies regularly, to alleviate the serious energy and food crisis that the Caribbean country is suffering.
In April, Russia donated nearly 20,000 tons of wheat to Cuba at a time when flour shortages on the island lead authorities to investigate the possibility of using chickpea flour to produce bread.
Russian Ambassador to Havana Andrei Guskov says his country agreed to send the wheat to Cuba in 2021, but the ship carrying it was held up for a month due to Western sanctions against Russia for its invasion of Ukraine.