Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday said there was a real threat of hunger and widespread social upheavals amid the increased volatility of world energy and prices.
“Our summit and other regional cooperation needs to resolve various problems. In particular, I’m talking about the increased volatility of world energy, food, fertilizer prices, prices for raw materials and other significant goods,” Putin said during his speech at the CICA summit in Astana.
“This leads to the deterioration in quality of life in developed and developing countries. Moreover, there is a real threat of hunger and widespread social upheavals, especially in the poorest countries,” Putin added.
Putin also said, “Russia is making its utmost effort to provide crucial products to countries needing them.”
“We call to eliminate all the artificial, illegitimate barriers preventing the restoration of the normal functioning of global chains of supplies, to resolve urgent tasks in the field of food security,” he said.
Many African countries depend heavily on grain imports from Russia and Ukraine. Amid market shortages, Russia has sought to portray the West as the villain, blaming it for rising food prices.
Western leaders, meanwhile, have accused the Kremlin of cynically using food as a weapon and waging an imperial-style war of conquest.
Putin noted that the meeting of the CICA summit “is taking place amid serious changes in the field of global politics and economy.”
“The world becomes multipolar. Asia plays a prominent, not to say the key role in this, where centers of power are getting stronger,” Putin said.
The Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia takes place in Astana on 13 October.
Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan are expected to meet within the plenary session of the CICA summit.