Wladimir Klitschko—the legendary heavyweight boxing champion and brother to the current mayor of Kyiv—has issued a warning about a looming “world food crisis.”
Speaking on ‘Mornings with Maria’ on Fox Business, Klitschko revealed that hundreds of millions of people will go hungry if Ukraine is unable to deliver the necessary wheat and grain.
“Ukraine has been providing food for a lot of countries in Asia and Africa,” Klitschko told FOX Business. “Half a billion people will be put to hunger because we cannot deliver grain that grows in Ukraine, which we’ve been doing for the past decades.”
Ukraine, which is known as the “breadbasket of the world,” has been unable to deliver grain due to Russian forces’ blockade of Ukrainian ports, as well as the invading country’s destruction of grain silos and agricultural machinery. Before the war, most of Ukraine’s wheat and corn were shipped through the Black Sea.
Russia and Ukraine export a combined third of the world’s wheat and barley, more than 70% of its sunflower oil and are prominent suppliers of corn. Egypt, the Arab world’s most populous country, alone imports 80% of its wheat from Ukraine and Russia. Estimates suggest that approximately 20 million tons of Ukrainian grain have been prevented from reaching the Middle East, North Africa and parts of Asia.
According to the United Nations. food prices as of April 2022 were 34% higher than they were one year ago.
Klitschko noted that a correlated support effort from world leaders and allies could help stem the tide of global hunger and show Russia that “this invasion was a big mistake.”
“I think the world food crisis will continue, as well as any other crisis, on the energetic side as well,” Klitschko said. “If we act together, we can do it. We can stop it.”