LILONGWE, Malawi (AP) — The Russian government has donated 20,000 tons of fertilizer to Malawi as part of its efforts to garner diplomatic support from various African nations.
Russia will give 260,000 tons of fertilizer to countries in the continent, Russian Ambassador to Malawi Nikolai Krasilnikov said at a handover ceremony Monday at the capital, Lilongwe.
He said he hopes African leaders will press for the abolition of international sanctions against Russia when they attend the second Russia-Africa summit to be held in St. Petersburg at the end of July.
The Russian manufacturer Uralchem-Ukalkali had produced the fertilizer and made the gift to Malawi, said Dmitry Shornikov, head of the firm’s southern Africa branch, who also attended the handover.
The fertilizer should help Malawi achieve its goals of substantially boosting its agricultural production and helping families grow more healthy and nutritious food, said Shornikov.
Malawi’s minister of Agriculture Kawale said the fertilizer will reach 400,000 farming households and boost their agricultural production.
Also attending the event was a representative of the United Nations’ World Food Program.
Malawi voted to censure Russia at the United Nations last year for its invasion of Ukraine. More than 15 other African countries abstained from the vote.