October 9, 2006


Russia bans loading of grains direct from railway cars, exports affected



Russia's railway authority RZhD has told grain exporters it will no longer allow direct unloading of grain from railway cars onto ships at Russia's southern sea ports, a move likely to affect half the country's 2006-2007 export grain.


The railway authority said its decision was motivated by a shortage of railway cars and said from now on export grain would have to be stored at port facilities prior to being loaded on ships.


There are only limited grain storage facilities at the Russian sea port of Novorossiisk, with loading at other ports done directly onto ships from railway cars.


The reduction in export grain handling by the ports is estimated by traders at about 5 million tonnes in the current marketing year, which is half of the expected total grain export by Russia in the 2006-2007 marketing year.


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