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News 206 views last update:6 Aug 2012

Russia bans grain exports until April 30

In an apparent effort to stabilize domestic bread and flour prices, Russia will ban all grain exports to Belarus and Kazakhstan until April 30, 2008.

A resolution on banning wheat exports to Belarus and Kazakhstan, part of a Customs Union with Russia, was signed on February 18 by Russian Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov.

In late January, the Russian government imposed a 40% export duty on grain exports to stabilize retail bread and flour prices. However, the duty, which will also remain in place until April 30, did not apply to the member states of the Customs Union, prompting the Russian government to impose a direct ban on exports to the two ex-Soviet republics.

The need for grain intervention arose when grain prices reached a record level of 6,300 rubles ($250) per metric ton of class 4 wheat and 5,700 rubles ($226) per metric ton of forage fodder in July 2007. Prices of bread, flour and other wheat-based food products also grew as a result.

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