13 Sep 2017 16:00

Miratorg to invest 200 bln rubles to expand production over 3-5 yrs - chief

MOSCOW. Sept 13 (Interfax) - Leading Russian meat producer Miratorg plans to invest about 200 billion rubles in the next three-five years to expand production.

"We have a great number of projects and in the next three-five years investment will be about 200 billion rubles," Miratorg President Viktor Linnik said on Rossiya 24 television on Wednesday.

Miratorg has invested 180 billion rubles in agricultural development in the past seven years, he said.

In the near future, the company plans to double the pork production project and will begin lamb meat production in March next year and is implementing a project in Bryansk region to process and tan cowhides. Production of rose veal has been launched. In addition, there is a project to produce pre-mixes and soup. The holding also plans to develop dairy production.

"We are studying global practices and in the very near term are introducing everything will generate savings and recoup investment," Linnik said. One other important project is gene-chipping animals, in order to determine their productivity at an early stage.

Investment this year will total 30 billion rubles and revenue will reach $2 billion, he said.

As for exports, Linnik said product worth $60 million would be exported this year. "If China opens up, we will export $300 million to China alone," he said, but added that negotiations with China over meat supplies continue "endlessly."

From the standpoint of exports, the optimal ruble exchange rate for the company would be 65-70 rubles/$1 or even 70-75 rubles/$1, he said.

Miratorg, established in 1995, includes grain companies, fodder plants, elevators, the Korocha pork production facility, an automated, refrigerated distribution center and a distribution company with affiliates in major Russian cities.

It has created from scratch production of marbled beef, including over 500,000 hectares of pasture land and over 50 farms to raise Aberdeen-angus steers in Bryansk, Kaliningrad, Smolensk and Kaluga regions.

Miratorg produced 409,000 tonnes of pork in 2016 (6.2% more than in 2015) and 102,000 tonnes of poultry meat (37% more) and supplied 62,140 tonnes of beef to the market (50% more). Miratorg-Zapad LLC, a subsidiary that produces frozen convenience meat products, boosted output 27% to 43,000 tonnes last year.

Revenue totaled 120 billion rubles, 25% more than in 2015. Growth is forecast at 25% this year.

Miratorg is owned by Victor and Alexander Linnik.