Russian Grain Exporters Seek to Expand Presence in India and China as Turkey Halts Wheat Imports

Russian grain exporters are looking to increase their supplies of pulses and cereals to India and China, as they seek to offset the potential impact of Turkey’s decision to halt wheat imports from June 21 to October 15, according to the Russian agriculture ministry.

Following talks between Agriculture Minister Oksana Lut and Russian grain exporters, the ministry stated that the meeting participants reached a consensus that Turkey’s refusal to import wheat would not affect Russia’s export potential. This is because Russia plans to reduce its grain exports to the global market to 60 million tons in the 2024/25 season, down from an estimated 70 million tons, including 53 million tons of wheat, in the 2023/24 season.

The ministry noted that in the current environment, domestic exporters will focus on the key markets of the Middle East and North Africa, as well as on developing relations with India and China, where there are prospects for increased supplies of pulses and broader opportunities for grain crops.

Turkey and Egypt have traditionally been major importers of Russian wheat. However, with Turkey’s decision to halt wheat imports, Russia will need to find new markets to accommodate its changing export plans.

The ministry’s statement comes as Russia faces significant crop damage due to spring frosts followed by drought, which has prompted the agriculture ministry to maintain its 2024 grain harvest forecast of 132 million tons, though it may be adjusted if the drought persists in several regions.

Agricultural consultancies have already lowered their forecasts for the wheat component of the harvest, with IKAR estimating 81.5 million metric tons and Sovecon forecasting 80.5 million metric tons.

Against the backdrop of high harvests in recent years, Russia has been actively seeking to expand its grain exports to new markets. However, the current crop issues may force Russia to concentrate its exports on its traditional markets in the Middle East and North Africa, while also exploring opportunities in India and China, as it looks to adapt to the changing global trade dynamics.

Russian Grain Exporters Seek to Expand Presence in India and China as Turkey Halts Wheat Imports
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