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Russian analysts cut 2019/20 wheat export estimates

Russian agriculture consultants IKAR and SovEcon said they downgraded their forecasts for Russia’s wheat exports in the new 2019/20 marketing season starting July 1 amid dry weather.

Russia, the world’s largest wheat exporter which ships its grain to Africa, the Middle East and Asia, started harvesting the 2019 grain crop amid hot weather in several regions last week. However, the crop output is still expected to be higher than in 2018.

IKAR downgraded its forecast for Russia’s 2019/20 wheat exports by 500,000 tonnes to 36.5 million tonnes. Its estimate of grain exports was cut by 1.4 million tonnes to 46 million tonnes, it said in a note.

SovEcon said in a separate note that it downgraded its wheat export forecast by 600,000 tonnes to 37.6 million tonnes. The estimate of grain exports was cut by 500,000 tonnes to 48.9 million tonnes.

IKAR and SovEcon currently expect Russia’s 2019 wheat crop at 80 million tonnes and 82.2 million tonnes respectively. That is compared with a crop of 72.1 million tonnes in 2018.

The export and crop estimates for wheat were downgraded due to persistent dryness across Russia’s southern region, the eastern part of the central Black Soil region and in part of the Volga region, IKAR said.

Russia exported 41.2 million tonnes of grain, including 34.2 million tonnes of wheat, between July 2018 and May 2019, according to SovEcon’s data.

It expects Russia’s June grain exports to slow down from May levels and total 1.1 million tonnes, including 800,000 tonnes of wheat.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Polina Devitt; editing by Alexander Smith and Deepa Babington)

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