Business news from Ukraine

Second caravan of four vessels with 170 thousand tons of agricultural products left Ukrainian ports

The second caravan of four vessels under the Istanbul Grain Initiative left Ukrainian ports on Sunday morning, the total tonnage increased to almost 170,000 tons, sunflower oil and sunflower seeds appeared in addition to corn.
“The second caravan with Ukrainian food has just left the ports of Odessa and Chornomorsk – 3 ships from Chornomorsk and one more from Odessa. There are almost 170 thousand tons of agricultural products on board 4 bulk carriers Mustafa Necati, Star Helena, Glory and Riva Wind” , – the Ukrainian Sea Ports Administration reported on Facebook.
According to the Turkish Ministry of Defense on Twitter, the Riva Wind ship is heading to Iskenderun with 44,000 tons of corn, Mustafa Necati – to Italy with 6,000 tons of sunflower oil, Star Helena – to China with 45,000 tons of sunflower seeds and Glory – to Istanbul with 66 thousand tons of corn.
“The vessels will be anchored north of Istanbul and will be inspected by the Joint Coordination Centre,” the Turkish Defense Ministry specified.
As reported, on July 22 in Istanbul, at the proposal of the UN, Ukraine, Turkey and UN Secretary-General António Guteres signed the Initiative for the safe transportation of grain and food from the Ukrainian ports of Odessa, Chornomorsk and Yuzhny.
As part of the implementation of agreements with a cargo of Ukrainian corn, 4 ships have already been sent with more than 80 thousand tons of corn: Razoni, Navi Star, Rojen and Polarnet.

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Ukraine in July 2022 increased export of agricultural products by 12%

In July of this year, Ukraine managed to export 3.0 million tons of agricultural products, bypassing its seaports, the key export infrastructure of the country, now blocked by Russian troops.
Export growth last month was 12% compared to June 2022, according to the Facebook page of the Ukrainian Club of Agrarian Business Association (UCAB) on Monday.
In terms of crops in July, grain exports amounted to 1.7 million tons (corn – 69%, wheat – 22%, barley – 9%), having increased by 21% compared to June.
According to the UCAB, in July Ukraine exported 597.2 thousand tons of oilseeds (sunflower seeds – 61%, rapeseed – 19%, soybeans – 9%), which is 7% more than the previous month. At the same time, the same amount of vegetable oil was exported as in June – 297.1 thousand tons, of which 94% is sunflower oil and 6% is soybean.
Export of sunflower and soybean cake and meal in July amounted to 185.9 thousand tons (sunflower – 85%, soybean – 15%), which corresponds to an increase of 34% compared to June.
Thus, last month, grain crops showed the largest growth volumes, the export of which increased by almost 300 thousand tons over the month. There was also a partial change in the structure of grain exports – an increase in the share of wheat and barley compared to previous periods, which is associated with the harvesting of these crops by Ukraine and, accordingly, an increase in supply.
“Although there is a positive trend in exports, prices for grain crops in the domestic market continue to decline. They are being pressured by an excess supply of both the last year’s crop and the arrival of a new crop at a significantly lower export growth rate,” the UCAB said in a statement.
As reported, before the start of the full-scale military invasion of the Russian Federation, Ukraine monthly exported 5-6 million tons of agricultural products through its key seaports in Odessa and Nikolaev.



In June this year, Ukraine managed to export 2.7 million tonnes of agricultural products, bypassing its seaports – the key export infrastructure of the country, now blocked by Russian troops.
Export growth in June amounted to 30% compared to May, according to the website of the Ukrainian Agribusiness Club (UCAB) on Friday.
In terms of crops in June, grain exports amounted to 1.4 million tonnes (corn – 86%, wheat – 10%, and barley – 3%), having increased by 23% compared to May.
Ukraine exported in June 642,500 tonnes of oilseeds (sunflower seeds – 84%, soybeans – 14%, and rapeseed – 2%), which is 52% more than in the previous month. At the same time, vegetable oil was exported by 45% more – 298,500 tonnes, of which 94% is sunflower and 6% soybean.
Export of sunflower and soybean cake and meal in June amounted to 139,100 tonnes (sunflower – 81%, and soybean – 19%), which corresponds to an increase of 20% compared to May.
“The highest growth rates are demonstrated by oilseeds, namely sunflower seeds. For the Ukrainian market, sunflower seeds have never been an export-oriented crop. Almost the entire volume was processed in Ukraine, after which sunflower oil was exported. The situation has now changed, and it is the export of seeds that has begun to grow,” the association clarified in the message.
According to the UCAB, now the main buyers of Ukrainian agricultural products are the countries closest to Ukraine – Romania, Poland, Bulgaria and Turkey, while before the Russian invasion, the main trading partners of the country were China, India, the Netherlands and Egypt.
“The export of agricultural products needs priority in shipments by land in order to save such an important direction of Ukraine’s economy until the seaports are unblocked. Without establishing the export of all manufactured products, farmers will not have enough funds to harvest already sown crops, and even more so for the next sowing in 2023,” the association stated.
As reported, in May 2022 Ukraine exported 1.74 million tonnes of grain and oilseeds and agricultural products for export by all modes of transport, which is 1.8 times higher than in April.



Uncertainty with the export of Ukrainian grain, leading to a global food crisis and rising food prices, can be resolved by buying last year’s and this year’s crops from Ukraine for a total of $30-35 billion through a specially created fund.
This will contribute to the development of exports from the country and its internal processing in the agro-industrial complex, as well as provide the Ukrainian agricultural sector with working capital and the opportunity to continue working under the conditions of the military invasion of the Russian Federation, MP of Ukraine Dmytro Solomchuk (the Servant of the People faction) wrote on his Telegram channel on Wednesday.
“The easiest way, given the current situation, is to create the World Food Fund, collect $30-35 billion, and transfer it to Ukrainian farmers, buying last year’s and fresh products at world prices, minus logistics, on the terms of responsible storage,” he wrote.
“The world, in turn, thanks to this, will stabilize inflation, calm the beginnings of a food storm, will be motivated to organize comfortable exports, and Ukrainian farmers will receive funds for winter sowing, which will save the world in 2023, and the development of a processed industry to simplify logistics. And most importantly, the Russian Federation will stop manipulating food security,” the MP added.
As reported, on June 28, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine approved a draft agreement with the UN World Food Programme (WFP) on the resumption of its office in the country, which will allow the organization, among other things, to purchase agricultural products from Ukrainian companies to carry out international humanitarian programs.

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The value of Ukrainian agricultural exports for the two months of the war with Russia (March-April) amounted to $ 1.74 billion, while in January-February the supply of such products brought 3.2 times more revenue – $ 5.68 billion, for January-April the country exported $ 7.42 billion worth of agricultural products
The key commodity groups in agricultural exports from Ukraine are traditionally cereals and oilseeds, vegetable oils and fats, waste from the processing industry and meat products, according to the website of the Institute of Agrarian Economics (IAE) on Monday.
According to the agency, agricultural products continue to be the main source of foreign exchange earnings for Ukraine’s foreign trade: in January-April 2022, its share in total exports exceeded 44%.
Despite the Russian military invasion, exports of agricultural products from Ukraine in January-April 2022 still exceed the figures for the first four months of 2021 by 3%, this excess is due to significant intensity of exports in January-February 2022 and a record harvest of 2021, the largest since the country’s independence.
“Today Ukraine still exceeds last year’s record food exports. However, Russia’s ongoing aggression, hostilities, occupation of territories in different regions of our country and blocking of seaports significantly reduce domestic foreign sales potential. Final export figures will depend on liquidity. , – quotes IAE deputy director of the institution Nikolai Pugachev.
It was reported that before the Russian military invasion, Ukraine exported up to 5 million tons of agricultural products per month through the ports of Odessa and Nikolaev, but now due to their naval blockade by Russia, the country can transport about 500 thousand per month. tons of grain. This leads to a monthly shortfall of about $ 1.5 billion in export earnings.
Since the beginning of the 2021/2022 marketing year (MY, July-June) and as of May 19, Ukraine has exported 46.51 million tons of cereals and legumes, which is 13.8% higher than on the same date of the previous MY. A total of 18.54 million tons of wheat was exported to foreign markets (18.7% more than in the same period of 2020 / 2021MG), 21.83 million tons of corn (+ 6.9%), 5.68 million tons of barley (+ 37.2%), 70.6 thousand tons of flour (-35.7%).



The European Commission has presented a set of actions to help Ukraine export agricultural products, the so-called “Solidarity Lanes.”
The plan was presented by European Commissioner for Transport Adina Vălean in Brussels on Thursday.
The European Commission said these proposals are presented as part of the EU solidarity reaction with Ukraine and will help Ukraine export its agricultural products. “Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and its blockade of Ukrainian ports, Ukrainian grain and other agricultural goods can no longer reach their destinations. The situation is threatening global food security and there is an urgent need to establish alternative logistics routes using all relevant transport modes,” the European Commission said.
According to the European Commissioner, some 20 million tonnes of grains have to leave Ukraine in less than three months using the EU infrastructure. “This is a gigantesque challenge, so it is essential to coordinate and optimize the logistic chains, put in place new routes, and avoid, as much as possible, the bottlenecks. Our communication addresses the emergency solutions but also medium and long time measures to better connect and integrate Ukraine’s infrastructure with the EU one. For both short-term and long-term solutions, we will work with the Ukrainian authorities and in close collaboration, especially with the neighbouring Member States, who spared no effort in helping during this crisis,” Vălean said.
According to the press release issued in this regard, as of today, in spite of immediate efforts by the EU and its Member States to ease border crossings between Ukraine and the EU, thousands of wagons and lorries are waiting for clearance on the Ukrainian side. “The average current waiting time for wagons is 16 days, while it is up to 30 days at some borders. More grain is still stored and held back in Ukrainian silos ready for export. Among the challenges are differing rail gauge widths: Ukrainian wagons are not compatible with most of the EU rail network, so most goods need to be transhipped to lorries or wagons that fit the EU standard gauge. This process is time-consuming and transhipment facilities along the borders are scarce,” the European Commission said.
In address these obstacles and set up the Solidarity Lanes, the Commission, together with Member States and stakeholders, will work on the following priority actions in the short term.
The first priorities are additional freight rolling stock, vessels and lorries. “The Commission calls on EU market players to urgently make additional vehicles available. In order to match demand and supply and establish the relevant contacts, the Commission will set up a matchmaking logistics platform and ask Member States to designate dedicated Solidarity Lanes contact points (a ‘one-stop-shop’).”
Another priority is the capacity of transport networks and transshipment terminals: the export of Ukrainian agricultural products should be prioritized, and infrastructure managers should make rail slots available for these exports. “The Commission also calls on market players to urgently transfer mobile grain loaders to the relevant border terminals to speed up transhipment. A road transport agreement with Ukraine will also remove bottlenecks,” the European Commission said.
Among the priorities are customs operations and other inspections and storage of products in the EU. To this end, the Commission urges national authorities to apply maximum flexibility and to ensure adequate staffing to accelerate procedures at border crossing points.
In the medium to long term, the Commission will also work on increasing the infrastructure capacity of new export corridors and on establishing new infrastructure connections in the framework of the reconstruction of Ukraine. “The next round of Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) calls for proposals will allow support for projects improving transport connections to Ukraine, including for railway connections and rail-road terminals. Against this background, the Commission today adopted a Decision with a view to signing a high-level agreement with Ukraine, updating the maps for the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T), as part of the Commission’s policy on extending the TEN-T to neighbouring countries.”

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