Putin says Russia will increase wheat exports as its record harvest & higher demand
Russia is one of the biggest wheat exporters in the world. President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday that Russia will increase wheat exports this year because it could have a record harvest.
Russia, the European Union, and Ukraine are all in a race to sell wheat to the Middle East and Africa. It keeps exporting even though Western sanctions against Moscow over what Russia calls its ‘special military operation’ in Ukraine have made logistics and payments hard.
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Putin told a meeting of top economic officials in Moscow that Russia plans to harvest 130 million tonnes of grain in 2022, including 87 million tonnes of wheat.
In 2020, Russia grew a record amount of grain, 133.5 million tonnes, of which 85.9 million tonnes was wheat. In 2021, there wasn’t as much food.
Putin said, ‘If this happens, which we think it will, it could be the biggest wheat crop in Russian history.’ He did not provide an export estimate.
Meeting global demand
Sovecon consultancy said in April that higher exports from Russia in the new July-June marketing season could help meet some of the growing global demand if Ukraine’s exports stay low and Kyiv doesn’t get access to its Black Sea ports.
Since February 24, when Moscow started what it calls a ‘special military operation’ in Ukraine, its ports have been closed. Also Read | Ukraine-Russia crisis: global wheat prices at 14-year high, India’s export potential beckon.
Since the West put sanctions on Moscow in late February, Russian exporters have mostly been able to fix problems with logistics and the transfer of payments. They are now exporting wheat from the Russian side of the Black Sea and sometimes from the Azov Sea.