Ukraine Wheat Exports to Drop, Aiding Russian and Romanian Sales


Ukraine’s wheat exports this season will probably drop almost a quarter from a year earlier, benefiting other major international competitors from the Black Sea region.

Shipments will slump 23 percent to 13 million metric tons in the season that started this month, according to the average of three analyst estimates in a Bloomberg survey. The figure was a record 16.9 million tons last season, researcher UkrAgroConsult says.

Ukraine was hit by dry weather last autumn, when farmers sowed wheat for this year, leading to cuts in the area planted. Though a warm winter and abundant rainfall in spring has improved the outlook, the nation’s projected harvest at 24.2 million tons will still be about 9 percent below last year’s record level, according to UkrAgroConsult.

Falling exports will benefit European countries like Romania on the Black Sea, as well as Russia, Laure Guinet, an analyst at trader ED&F Man Holdings Ltd., said by e-mail. “Availability will be high so Ukraine exports should be easily substituted.”

Thailand Output

Russia will probably increase its outbound shipments 10 percent this season as its crop is estimated to rise to an all-time high.

Ukraine’s biggest wheat customers last season were Egypt and Thailand, Liza Malyshko, a UkrAgroConsult analyst, said by phone. Ukraine met a quarter of demand for wheat from South Korea, mainly for feed, in the year ended in June, the research company said.

Thailand is expected to cut foreign purchases this season, Malyshko said. It hadshortages of local feed-grade corn and rice for swine and poultry farmers in the previous period, leading to bigger imports of replacement crops, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Thailand’s output is expected to rebound this season, USDAfigures show.

Even if Ukraine’s wheat exports drop, they will probably still rank as its second largest, according to data compiled by UkrAgroConsult.


Readers choice: TOP-5 articles of the month by UkrAgroConsult