December 10, 2008

Russia 2008 grain exports reach 10.5 million tonnes to date


Russia exported 10.5 million tonnes of grain to date since the beginning of the current marketing year July 1, and expects grain exports to reach 11.5 million tonnes by the end of current calendar year, the agriculture ministry announced Tuesday (December 9).


In addition the government's intervention grain purchases on the domestic market totalled to date 2.65 million tonnes and were expected to reach 5 million tonnes by January 1, 2009.


The Russian government is allocating RUB10 billion (US$357.6 million) from the federal budget to subsidize the export of another 10 million tonnes of grain in the first months of 2009.


The government also proposes buying over 10 million tonnes of intervention grain in the current marketing year.


Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov said earlier the large harvest this year had resulted in about 20 million tonnes of surplus grain on the domestic market, which needs to be taken off the market because it "exerts downward pressure on the market and prevents farmers from acquiring the necessary equipment, seeds, fuel and fertilizers to ensure good harvest next year."


The Russian agriculture ministry expects this year's grain harvest to be more than 100 million tonnes and grain exports in the 2008-2009 marketing year of 20 million-25 million tonnes.


In 2007, Russia harvested 82 million tonnes of grain and exported 12.754 million tonnes of grain in the 2007-2008 marketing year that runs from July to June.

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