Wheat exports up in Black Sea countries

25-08-2015 | |
Wheat exports up in Black Sea countries
Wheat exports up in Black Sea countries

Once again, Black Sea countries’ (Kazakhstan, Russia, and Ukraine) wheat exports are projected at a record in 2015/16. This is stated in the USDA report: Grain: World Markets and Trade.

Russia accounts for the lion’s share of trade and is forecast at a record, while Ukraine’s exports are the second highest ever. Kazakhstan is up slightly from last year. Russia’s largest markets are in the Middle East and North Africa, particularly Egypt and Turkey.

Quality of wheat

Ukraine’s wheat is typically lower quality with a large percentage sold into feed markets in the EU, East Asia, and Southeast Asia. Food-quality wheat is also exported to Bangladesh and countries in North Africa. Kazakhstan’s wheat is generally uncompetitive other than to neighbouring countries in Iran and Central Asia because it is primarily land locked and transportation costs to ports can be prohibitive.

Shift of markets

For 2015/16, production in the Middle East and several countries in North Africa is expected to rebound significantly from last year and import demand is projected to fall as a result. This will likely shift lower-priced Black Sea wheat into other markets. Both Russia and Ukraine have already expanded market share in several traditional U.S. markets such as Mexico and Nigeria. Russian and Ukrainian wheat market share in Nigeria has already grown from 1 to 17 percent in 2 years.

US to expand exports

Similarly for Mexico, Russia and Ukraine captured 12 percent of the market in 2014/15, compared to zero just 2 years ago. However, The United States is expected to offset these losses with an opportunity to expand exports in Asian and South American markets as a result of tightening supplies in both Argentina and Canada.

Source: USDA

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Emmy Koeleman Freelance editor