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Global Food Crisis: E.U. Border Force Bracing for ‘Waves’ of Mass Migration as Global South Goes Hungry

Metin Aktas/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
Metin Aktas/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Europe’s border force is reported as bracing itself for more “waves” of mass migration, as the developing world goes hungry as a result of the war in Ukraine.

Frontex, the European Union’s border and coast guard force, is reportedly bracing itself for renewed “waves” of mass migration caused by food shortages resulting from the Ukraine war.

One of the world’s main exporters of food destined for the developing world, Ukraine has struggled to export any of its agricultural produce since Russia’s most recent invasion of the country earlier this year, destabilising food supplies for much of the world’s most vulnerable as a result.

Now, according to a report by Le Figaro Frontex is now saying that Europe must prepare itself for an influx of migrants not just from Ukraine, but that “at the same time [the EU has] to prepare also for refugees coming from other regions because of food insecurity”.

“You know that the transport of wheat from Ukraine is hampered. And this will create waves of migration. So we are preparing for that,” spokeswoman Aija Kalnaja told reporters on Monday.

Such a migration wave would only add to the pressures already being experienced by Europe, which still sees thousands of illegal boat migrants land on its shores each year, while also having to deal with millions of refugees coming to the bloc through Ukraine.

While the war in the country rages on, farmers in Ukraine tentatively harvest their latest crops of grain and other assorted agricultural produce.

However, for those lucky enough to even be able to get their crops out of the ground, it remains completely unclear how many will store their bounties, let alone how they will manage to transport it to paying customers and those in need.

For many agricultural workers in the country, the last harvest is still rotting in their storage units, leaving them no space to put their most recent haul.

Shipping out crops both old and new alike poses an even greater problem altogether, with sea routes largely being closed off due to what the West says is a Russian blockade of the Black Sea, while overland routes are simply incapable of shifting significant amounts of Ukraine’s millions of tons of produce.

“Most of the farmers are running the risk of becoming bankrupt very soon,” Mykola Horbachov of the Ukrainian Grain Association is reported as saying regarding the predicament.

“Farmers need to purchase fertilizers, seeds, diesel, pay the salary,” he continued, saying that farmers were selling wheat at below cost in a desperate attempt to get by.

“Ukrainian farmers can’t print money,” Horbachov added.

While farmers in the region struggle to sell their stuck grain, global organisations who in the past supplied the developing world with food are struggling to buy it, with the World Food Programme suspending aid deliveries to around two million people due to the organisation no longer being able to afford to pay for it.

“We had to decide who to keep assisting and who we can afford to suspend the assistance from – not because they’re not in need but because they can survive,” a representative from the organisation previously said, noting that food insecurity was only likely going to get worse due to it not being able to supply many of the affected individuals.

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