Russia’s export of grain may double to 52mn tonnes in the 2018 agricultural season, chief executive of the Institute for Agricultural Market Studies (IKAR) Dmitry Rylko said, reports Tass.
Within this number, the export of wheat is also expected to rise and account for 40mn tonnes of exports, which is a record figure.
"There is a possibility that the volume of wheat exports, taking into account the illegal exports to Kazakhstan, that took place this year (up to half a million tonnes) will total 40mn tonnes. This is, of course, a colossal record. Last year, for the first time in history we exported 27mn tonnes (of wheat) and it seemed to be a record. This year wheat exports may reach 40mn tonnes. As for all cereals, according to our estimates, exports may amount to 51-52mn tonnes," Rylko said as cited by Tass.
In 2017 Russia earned $20bn from the export of grain – more than it earned from the export of arms. While the expert gave no estimate of the value of the wheat exports, the revenues could climb to well over $30bn this year if not more. One of the factors holding back grain prices in 2018 is that Morocco is on track for a bumper harvest which will provide more price competition. Also last year North America had a poor harvest but it should improve this year.
So far Russia is on track for a good harvest, even if it falls short from last year’s all-time record beating 134mn tonnes, Mike Lee, an independent consultant told bne IntelliNews in a podcast “Black Sea grain is the new oil for Russia and Ukraine.”
In late March, Russia’s Agriculture Minister Alexander Tkachev said his ministry forecasts grain exports in 2017-2018 agricultural year at 52-53mn tonnes.