June 3, 2011


Ukraine decreases grain shipment forecast



Ukraine may export 15-18 million tonnes of grain in the 2011/12 season which is less than the previous official forecasts, according to Agriculture Minister Mykola Prysyazhnyuk on Thursday (Jun 2).


The ministry previously projected grain exports at 19-20 million tonnes.


Prysyazhnyuk also did not give any reasons for the revision.


"Everything will depend on the volume of grain harvest. If the crop will be two to three million tonnes higher, we will export this additional volume," Prysyazhnyuk said.


He declined to give the latest grain harvest forecast while his first deputy Mykola Bezugly said last week that the former Soviet republic would harvest a grain crop that is significantly higher than 45 million tonnes.


Ukraine harvested 39.2 million tonnes of grain in drought-hit 2010 and 46 million in 2009.


Prysyazhnyuk also said Ukrainian ending stocks were likely to total 5.8 million tonnes at the end of June.


Analysts and traders said grain export restrictions imposed in October were the main reason for the high stocks.


According to preliminary data, Ukraine exported about 10.5 million tonnes in the first eleven months of the current season ending in June. In the previous 2009/10 season, it exported 21.5 million tonnes of grain.


Prysyazhnyuk said Ukraine, which consumes about 26 million tonnes of grain per season, was likely to export an additional 800,000-900,000 tonnes of grain in June.

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