28 Sep 2017 16:43

Russian food exports to increase to $20 bln rubles in 2017 - Tkachev

MOSCOW. Sept 28 (Interfax) - Russia could boost food exports to $20 billion rubles in 2017, Russian Agriculture Minister Alexander Tkachev told journalists.

"In financial terms the figure [for food exports] could even reach $20 billion," the minister said, noting that exports totaled $17 billion rubles in 2016.

"This is significant growth and of course it shows our export potential. Moreover, this includes not only grain, but meat, vegetable oil, sugar and so forth," Tkachev said, adding that "we are reaching serious heights and are taking up a very large share of the market for export products for the whole world."

The minister said that grain exports could total 43 million-45 million tonnes this agriculture year from July 2017 to June 2018, including 30 million tonnes of wheat. "This is a significant addition of up to 20% in comparison to last year," he said.

He said that at the moment a favorable situation was emerging for Russian grain on the world market due to bad harvests in Australia and Argentina where the harvest is expected to fall by 20%. "Taken together, those countries export around 28 million tonnes of wheat," he said.

According to the Agriculture Ministry, the price for class 4 wheat has reached $191 per tonne (Novorossiysk Port).