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MFA says Russian Agricultural Bank should be connected to SWIFT

According to the deputy foreign minister, lifting the sanctions will make transactions on agriculture products and fertilizers seamless

MOSCOW, September 14. /TASS/. Russian Agricultural Bank (Rosselkhozbank) should be reconnected to SWIFT, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Vershinin said in an interview aired by the Rossiya-24 TV news channel, adding that interim solutions will have no effect and will not help deal with the problem.

"It is necessary to connect Rosselkhozbank to the SWIFT system, to remove sanctions from it, thus making transactions only on agriculture products and fertilizers seamless. Those simple things became clearer with each round of consultations that we held during the year. This is why those interim solutions do not provide decisions, they do not offer the way that will bring us to settlement of the problem," he said when commenting on the possibility of connecting Russian Agricultural Bank’s Luxemburg-based subsidiary to SWIFT.

"Results brought to us are very important for us, not just promises to do something. With those results in place, the resumption of the Black Sea Initiative will be possible immediately as Russian President [Vladimir Putin] has said," Vershinin noted.

The Black Sea Initiative grain deal was a set of agreements reached in Istanbul in July 2022 for ensuring a safe corridor for ships carrying Ukrainian grain as well as Russian agricultural exports. After several extensions, it was terminated starting July 18 at Russia’s initiative when Moscow notified Turkey, Ukraine and the UN of its objections to further extending the deal. Putin pointed out earlier that the Russia-related provisions of the deal were never implemented, despite the United Nations’ efforts, and the bulk of Ukrainian grain exports had gone to wealthy Western countries, contrary to the original intent of the deal to provide grain to needy countries, particularly in Africa. Still, Moscow has stated that it was ready to resume the grain deal promptly once its Russia-related provisions were implemented.