5 Sep 2023 19:23

Russia increasing grain exports to Latin America as Argentina becomes weaker market player - Grain Union

MOSCOW. Sept 5 (Interfax) - The growth in Russian grain deliveries to Latin American countries can be explained by the declining role of Argentina in that market, as well as the re-loading of ships that carry soybeans back to Russia, Arkady Zlochevsky, President of the Russian Grain Union, said at a press conference on Tuesday in Moscow.

"The Latin American market has expanded [for Russian grain], but not because we have become more competitive. Argentina is playing a less and less of a role there," he said, noting that "not very positive processes" in the Argentine grain market are occurring due to the application of export duties.

"It just opens up more opportunities for us as Argentina has weakened as a competitor," he added.

In addition, shipments became possible due to the counter-loading of ships that carry soybeans back to Russia. Vessels that supply soybeans for processing, mainly to the Kaliningrad region, carry back wheat, he explained. "Logistics has ceased to be critical, since this is counter-loading, with no empty runs. Therefore, these deliveries have become possible. We are competitive when there is counter-loading; as long as there is a mutual flow of goods, we will deliver there," Zlochevsky said.

According to the Grain Union, in August this year, 253,000 tonnes of wheat were shipped to Brazil, 124,000 tonnes to Mexico, 59,000 tonnes to Venezuela, and 55,000 tonnes to Peru. A year ago, there were no exports to these destinations.