December 19, 2005


Ukraine could become world's sixth biggest grain exporter


Ukraine could become the world's sixth largest exporter if its grain exports hit the expected record high of 12 million tonnes in the 2005-06 marketing year, said the USDA.


The top five grain exporters in the world are Australia, Canada, Russia, the EU and the US.


The increase in exports is due to its high grain production and substantial carryover stocks this year.


Another important factor is the improvement of Ukraine's ports after international grain trading companies invested heavily in the upgrading and expanding of port facilities and infrastructure, such as through building new terminals and renovating older, outdated terminals. Ukraine now has four ports with grain terminals capable of handling Panamax-sized vessels.


Ukraine's grain shipping capacity is now estimated at more than 20 million tonnes a year. During the first five months of 2005-06, Ukraine exported 6.53 million tonnes of grain, most of which are wheat and barley.


Meanwhile, Ukraine's Agrarian Policy Ministry expects 2005-06 exports at 8-10 million tonnes, up from 11.4 million tonnes in 2004-05.