Belarus will be forced to substitute Ukrainian soybeans in the new season


Svetlana Kupreeva oilseed and vegoil market analyst at "UkrAgroConsult"

Taking into account that, out of all the oilseeds, the natural and climatic conditions in Belarus are only favorable for growing rapeseed, this crop has usually remained in the focus of our analytics.

Now the interest is shifting to soybeans. The reason is the launch of a state-of-the-art multi-seed oil extractor by Sodruzhestvo Group in 2018. This plant is the largest in Belarus.

Before the current 2018/19 season, the key supplier of soybeans to Belarus was Ukraine, whose market share approximated 100%. Soybean supplies from Russia to Belarus were irregular and insignificant prior to last season. However, Russia exported roughly 63 KMT of soybeans to the country in MY 2017/18 for utilization of capacities of the new oil extractor.

Growth in domestic soybean crushing enabled Belarus to partially solve the problem of meeting the livestock sector’s needs – this has already affected meal import statistics. As a reminder, Ukraine was the top supplier in these markets as well, accounting for more than 70% of total purchases.

In addition, Belarus enhances its position in foreign markets of soybean products in 2018. So, according to the National Statistics Committee of Belarus, exports grew significantly during the first eight months of the current year: soybean shipments were ten times as high as last year, while soybean oil deliveries were 17 times higher than in 2017.

In the 2018/19 season, Belarus will be forced to adjust its raw material flows because Ukraine has opted for increasing domestic soybean processing and cancelled soybean export VAT refunds. Will Russia cope with meeting soybean demand from Belarus, taking into account that the Chinese market absorbs almost 90% of Russian total soybean exports and North Korea’s interest increases persistently in the light of global trends?

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