Russia lifts grain export forecast, no export curbs planned


Russia's agriculture ministry has increased its forecast for the country's 2018/19 grain exports to 42 million tonnes, of which 14 million tonnes will be exported in January-June, two traders familiar with discussions at a meeting at the ministry on Friday said.

Major grain traders attended the routine meeting with Russian officials, who are closely monitoring to see how big exporters are faring given a lower crop than last year.

Speculation that Russia, the world's largest wheat exporter, could limit exports later in the season, which started on July 1, have supported global wheat prices in recent months. However, risks of any curbs have eased since September.

The agriculture ministry declined to comment. It previously expected Russia's grain exports to be 38 million-39 million tonnes, including 35 million tonnes of wheat, in the 2018/19 season.

The ministry did not give a specific estimate for wheat exports at the meeting on Friday, the traders said, adding that the next meeting was planned for February.

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