Voices from Russia

Saturday, 28 January 2017

Russia World Wheat Exports Leader: Shipping Over 25 Million Tonnes

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On Thursday, the Russian Export Centre told us that Russia became the world leader in wheat exports in 2016:

According to evaluations, in 2016, Russia’s wheat exports exceeded 25 million tonnes, which surpassed last year’s [2015] record by about 14 percent.

The Centre also noted that the USA, the long-standing world leader in wheat exports, exported about 24 million tonnes in 2016, Canada and Australia, about 20 million tonnes, whilst France and the Ukraine exported 18 million tonnes of wheat. According to the Centre, Egypt was the largest importer of Russian wheat, purchasing about 5.7 million tonnes. Other buyers were Turkey, Bangladesh, Nigeria, Azerbaijan, Yemen, Sudan, Iran, and Morocco. In 2016, Russia had a record grain harvest, totalling about 119.1 million tonnes, including 73.3 million tonnes of wheat.

26 January 2017

Sputnik International

https://sputniknews.com/russia/201701261050035505-russia-wheat-export-leader/

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Tuesday, 13 December 2016

FAO Sez Russia is Now Major Actor on Global Agriculture Markets

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UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Director-General José Graziano da Silva told RIA Novosti:

Russia made significant progress in the agriculture sector; it’s now an important player on global agricultural markets. It’s poised to become the biggest global wheat exporter in 2016/17. Further, our understanding is that forecasts show that Russia’s total cereal production in 2016 will reach record levels. Russia was one of the most important partners of FAO, significantly contributing to global nutrition security. The [Russian-FAO] coöperation revolves around knowledge exchange and provision of technical assistance to developing countries in ensuring food security, food safety, nutrition, and in tackling transnational animal and plant diseases. FAO is also very much interested in attracting Russian expertise to its forestry, fisheries, land/water management, and soil programmes.

Russia provided 6 million USD (366 million Roubles. 41.4 million Renminbi. 405.6 million INR. 7.878 million CAD. 8.028 million AUD. 5.658 million Euros. 4.728 million UK Pounds) to FAO to implement a food and nutrition security project in Armenia, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan. Russia is also interested in allocating money for a FAO project for the progressive control of foot-and-mouth disease in the same region. In 2015, during my official visit to the Russian Federation, we signed a 1 million USD (61 million Roubles. 6.9 million Renminbi. 67.6 million INR. 1.313 million CAD. 1.338 million AUD. 943,000 Euros. 788,000 UK Pounds) coöperation agreement to support the Global Soil Partnership. I also hope that FAO and Russia would boost coöperation to support FAO work in post-disaster and emergency situations across the globe. The international community can achieve the ambitious goal of eradicating hunger by 2030. We aren’t talking about simply halving hunger’s scope or reducing the absolute numbers of hungry people… we’re talking about really ending hunger by 2030, and providing healthy sustainable diets to all. This is a bold goal, but we’re convinced that it’s indeed viable and affordable. We can and we must be the Zero Hunger generation.

The struggle against hunger requires multiple efforts in many spheres. The UN’s 17 sustainable development goals, including elimination of hunger and poverty, as well ensuring quality education, are part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development adopted by the UN General Assembly on 25 September 2015. The instability and various conflicts around the world have a negative impact on the issue of global food security, as well as social protection capabilities. Conflict is one of the main… if not the main… drivers of food insecurity and malnutrition. It reduces food availability, disrupts access to food and health care, interrupts food production and agriculture, and undermines social protection systems. Indeed, conflict characterised every famine in the modern era. Some 80 percent of humanitarian funding appeals had links to conflicts, adding that over 56 million people affected by protracted crises were in an emergency level of food insecurity. The FAO exerts efforts to promote stability and food security in conflict-ridden countries such as Nigeria, which deals with the Boko Haram insurgency.

13 December 2016

Sputnik International

https://sputniknews.com/russia/201612131048482533-russia-agriculture-markets/

Monday, 17 October 2016

Grain Powerhouse: Russia “To Be Among Top Grain Exporters for a Long Time”

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Russia set a record for the agricultural sector by harvesting almost 112 million tonnes of grain by 4 October, setting a 25-year record. Furthermore, Bloomberg reports that Russia is becoming the world’s grain-export powerhouse. Bloomberg admits that Russia is about to retake the leading role in the world’s wheat trade it last held a century ago. It commented on the country’s record grain harvest:

From the Black Sea coast and the Volga River heartland to the sun-scorched steppes of Siberia, Russia’s farm belt is enjoying a renaissance, with grain at the leading edge. Turbocharged by the 45 percent drop in the rouble against the dollar over the last few years and bumper crops, local producers are crowding into export markets long dominated by big Western players.

Indeed, the estimate for this year’s total grain harvest should be well over 115 million tonnes. RIA Novosti quoted Chairman of the RF Government D A Medvedev:

Let me put it straight… this is an all-time record for the Russian agricultural sector.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture, Russia will produce 116 million tonnes of grain, or, perhaps a bit more. The ministry envisions that Russia will sell up to 40 million tonnes of grain in 2016-17 (including 30 million tonnes of wheat) on the world market, up from 32 million tonnes exported in 2015. Russia broke it’s previous record in 2008 when farmers produced 108.2 million tonnes of grain.

Citing the US Department of Agriculture, Bloomberg reminded its readers that last season Russia outpaced the USA as a wheat exporter for the first time in decades. According to the media outlet:

Russia is likely to displace the EU from the top spot this year.

Indeed, in mid-September, according to International Growth Centre (IGC) figures, EU export expectations have gone down to 25.5 million tons. Heavy rains dealt a heavy blow to wheat hopes in Germany and France this year. So far, Russia entered into new grain markets, toppling its competitors. This year, the main export destinations for Russian wheat are Egypt (the world’s biggest buyer), Bangladesh, and Mozambique, as well as Indonesia, Mali, Malta, Mexico, and Burma. Furthermore, this year, Moscow struck export deals with Algeria and Morocco. According to agricultural watchdog Rosselkhoznadzor, Russia may also begin supplying wheat to Venezuela by the end of 2016. Meanwhile, in late September, Chairman Medvedev inked a directive to drop the duty on wheat exports, introduced in February 2015, from 23 September 2016, until 1 July 2018, to support Russian farmers and boost the development of the grain market.

Incredible as it may seem, the US-led sanctions policy bolstered the growth of the Russian agricultural sector, it took advantage of the embargo on EU food products and a weakened rouble. On 2 September, Agriculture Minister Alexander Tkachyov highlighted that Russia’s grain output may reach 170 million tonnes a year by 2030 with annual exports of 64 million tonnes. Earlier this year, Tkachyov signalled:

Russia plans to increase its grain production to 120 million tonnes per year by 2020.

Tom Basnett, general manager at Market Check, a Sydney-based commodity consultant, said:

Russia will be among the top exporters for a long time, especially given the potential advances in productivity there. Other producers need to fight harder to maintain their traditional markets.

Arkady Zlochevsky, President of the Russian Grain Union noted:

With our nature and climate, it’s our destiny to be an exporter.

8 October 2016

Sputnik International

https://sputniknews.com/politics/201610081046109407-grain-russia-export/

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Russia Dominates Global Wheat Market

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For the second year running, Russia is the world’s top wheat producer with exports of 22.5 million tonnes of grain this year, according to the US Department of Agriculture. Russia won contracts to exports 120,000 tonnes of wheat to Egypt. The Agriculture Ministry stated that in the autumn, as soon as the harvest brings in a new crop, Russia would supply wheat to China. Russia’s leading position in the global wheat market is because of its low-price strategy, which increased its market share.

The weakened national currency and favourable weather, as well as more investment, pushed forward Russian agriculture and unseated the USA as the world’s biggest wheat exporter. The Black Sea region, including the Ukraine and Romania, traditionally takes the lead at the start of the season with French exports catching up later. However, this year, France is out of the league of top wheat sellers after heavy flooding waterlogged fields and increased concerns over grain quality. According to German agriculture consultant BayWa, the soggy fields reduced crops by 17 percent (to 34 million tonnes) this season.

Matt Ammermann, a commodity risk manager at US-based financial services firm FCStone told Bloomberg, “The Black Sea just has so much to sell now and the quality is coming out better than expected. Traders aren’t even willing to look at French wheat after the harvest delays”. As of Friday, the Moscow-based Institute for Agricultural Market Studies said that wheat at Black Sea ports sold for 165 USD (10,550 Roubles. 1,100 Renminbi. 11,100 INR. 215 CAD. 220 AUD. 150 Euros. 125 UK Pounds)/tonne according to. That’s at least 15 USD (960 Roubles. 100 Renminbi. 1,000 INR. 19.50 CAD. 20 AUD. 13.60 Euros. 11.35 UK Pounds) cheaper than French wheat. Kiev-based UkrAgroConsult believed that Russia should gain nearly 16 percent of the global market this year compared to 14.4 percent a year ago. France’s share would reportedly decline to 11 percent from 12.1 percent last season. Sergei Feofilov, the head of UkrAgroConsult, told Bloomberg, “Russia’s position in the wheat market is changing because Russian farmers received high margins from selling their grain crop of last year, which they used to invest in better farming and technology”. Experts are positive on Russian wheat production through 2020, citing the weak rouble over the period. Alexandre Andrey, an analyst at BMI Research, told Bloomberg, “Thus, Russia would be in a prime position to compete on volume and price against France, Romania, and the Ukraine”.

20 July 2016

RT

https://www.rt.com/business/352272-russia-lead-wheat-market/

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