Ukraine is to remain the world's biggest barley exporter, but will rely on new markets to ensure it keeps wheat shipments even at 60% of last year's record levels, Kiev-based analysts have said.
UkAgroConsult said that an 11.1% slide to an estimated 11.2m tonnes in Ukraine's barley output this year had been at least matched by other major producers, including Canada, the European Union and Russia.
The decline would "allow Ukraine to retain its strong export position", UkAgroConsult said, pegging exports at 6.0m tonnes, a figure was also proposed by a Bunge analyst.
While down on 1.2m tonnes year on year, the figure should be enough to beat rivals, with Canada, for instance, forecasting foreign shipments of 2.30m tonnes, and production down 24% at 8.9m tonnes.
Russia's barley prospects have been hurt by a drop in sowings to what Moscow based SovEcon believes could be a record low.
However, with many wheat importers reporting strong harvests, Ukraine would have to turn to new markets. "In 2009-10, the direction of Ukrainian wheat imports could be shifted," the group said.
"Reduced imports to Iran, Morocco and Turkey will be compensated partly by growth in demand for wheat in Korea, Indonesia, Malaysia, Syria."
Even so, Ukraine exports would fall 40% to 7.75m tonnes, a drop also reflecting a 24% fall to 19.65 tonnes in its wheat harvest.