Business news from Ukraine

UKRAINE COULD CUT SUGAR PRODUCTION BY 26%

Sugar production in Ukraine in the new season could fall by 23-29%, to 1.3-1.4 million tonnes, and the number of sugar refineries from 42 operating this season to 343-35, the Ukrtsukor national association of sugar producers has said.
“We are already seeing a reduction in the acreage of sugar beet this year and, of course, it will have its own “imprint” this autumn, when significantly fewer sugar refineries are launched compared with the 2018/2019 season. According to our estimates, it will be 34-35 enterprises, while in the current season 42 refineries worked,” Deputy Chairperson of the association Ruslana Butylo said.
According to her, given the reduction in acreage and the number of operating refineries, caused by the global sugar surplus, a significant reduction in sugar production and price hikes are predicted.
“The global surplus of recent years has not had the best effect on the state of sugar production in Ukraine. Excess sugar “pressed” on prices and lowered them more and more, far beyond the break-even point of production, diluting all financial reserves of producers, both in the world and in Ukraine. At the moment, it is rather difficult to predict the yield and sugar content of beets, the sowing of which is almost completed. However, we can assume that sugar will be 23-29% less this autumn – 1.3-1.4 million tonnes. This is the lowest amount of production since 2013,” Butylo said.

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LARGEST SUGAR PRODUCER IN UKRAINE ASTARTA CUTS SUGAR SALES BY 42% IN Q1 2019

Astarta agricultural holding, the largest sugar producer in Ukraine, in January-March 2019 saw a fall in sugar sales by 42% year-over-year, to 53,960 tonnes, the company has reported on the Warsaw Stock Exchange (WSE) on Wednesday.
According to the press release, the sales of wheat for the period fell 78.7%, to 10,750 tonnes, sunflower by 42%, to 11,830 tonnes, and milk by 7%, to 26,020 tonnes.
At the same time, sales of corn increased 3.3-fold, to 304,210 tonnes, barley – from 9 tonnes to 2,410 tonnes, soybean oil – by 13%, to 14,220 tonnes, and soybean meal – by 11%, to 46,870 tonnes.
The company said that at the same time, the average sugar prices for this period decreased 15%, sunflower 10%, soybean oil 16%, while wheat grew by 20%, corn by 23%, barley by 1.8 times, soybean meal by 1%, and milk by 15%.
Astarta is a vertically integrated agricultural holding operating in five regions of Ukraine.

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BIGGEST UKRAINIAN SUGAR PRODUCER ASTARTA GETS EUR 21.1 MLN NET LOSS IN 2018

After three years of lucrative work, Astarta agricultural and industrial holding saw EUR 21.11 million in net loss in 2018 due to worsening of financial indicators and poor conditions on both sugar and grain markets. According to the company’s yearly report posted in the website of the Warsaw Stock Exchange on April 8, last year its earnings reduced by 18.8%, to EUR 372.22 million, EBITDA dropped by 52.4%, to EUR 56.87 million, and export declined by 3 percentage points, to 56%.
In addition, Astarta’s net debt increased by 2.3 times, to EUR 295.45 million, in 2018.
“We are well prepared for 2019 and showing cautious optimism. The company has revised its investment program, adjusted its sales policy and improved its credit portfolio and spending patterns,” founder and Director General of Astarta Viktor Ivanchyk said in the report.
The company earned EUR 119 million in the sugar segment (32% from consolidated revenue) in 2018. Its sales are estimated at 325,000 tonnes (27% less than in 2017) while its prices dropped by 23%. The company explained drop in sales by weak pricing environment and increased costs value of products due to poor quality of the beet harvest in 2018. Export accounted for 40% from sales in 2018.
According to the report, Astarta estimated its share in sugar production of Ukraine at 21%.
The company earned EUR 127 million in the crop production segment (34% from consolidated revenue). Astarta constructed three grain elevators with a total capacity of 230,000 tonnes in 2018.
Astarta earned EUR 74 million in the soybean processing segment (20% from consolidated revenue), which is 2% more than in 2017. The company produced 42,000 tonnes of soybean oil and 141,000 tonnes of oil cake.
The company’s revenue in dairy farming dropped by 8%, to EUR 29 million, in 2018.
Astarta is a vertically integrated agribusiness holding operating in Poltava, Vinnytsia, Khmelnytsky, Ternopil, Zhytomyr, Chernihiv, Cherkasy, and Kharkiv regions. The holding includes eight sugar factories, agricultural enterprises with a land bank of about 250,000 hectares and dairy farms.

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UKRAINE EXPORTS 586,500 TONNES OF SUGAR IN 2018

Ukraine in the 2018 calendar year exported 586,500 tonnes of sugar (2% less from 2017) for $217.09 million, the Ukrtsukor National Association of Sugar Producers has reported. “If to compare with the previous year, the export volume has not changed much, but its geography has changed. If last year the largest buyer of Ukrainian sugar was Sri Lanka (69,030 tonnes), then in 2018 it was Uzbekistan (285,300 tonnes.) They are followed by Azerbaijan and Libya with 44,700 tonnes and 43,800 tonnes respectively,” Ruslana Butylo, the deputy chairperson of the board of Ukrtsukor, said.
At the same time, according to the association, sugar exports for the four months of the current marketing year (September 2018 – August 2019) grew by 14.3%, to 198,900 tonnes. “Taking into account the market situation and still a surplus year, even despite the decrease in forecasts for sugar production in India, Ukrainian producers will have to work to improve product quality and establish long-term contracts,” she said.
In the 2017 calendar year, Ukraine exported 598,700 tonnes of sugar for $279.9 million.

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UKRAINE PRODUCES OVER 1.64 MLN TONNES OF SUGAR

Sugar production in Ukraine as of December 19 amounted to 1.64 million tonnes.
According to the Ukrtsukor National Association of Sugar Producers, at present sugar refineries in the country have processed 12.1 million tonnes of sugar beets.
As reported, Ukraine started a new sugar making season on August 31.
In 2018, the area under sugar beets was 280,000 hectares, which is 13% less than in 2017.
Ukraine exported 560,400 tonnes of sugar in the 2017/2018 agricultural year (September-August), which is 27.2% less than in the previous agri-year.
Sugar production in the 2017/2018 agri-year increased by 6.5% and amounted to 2.14 million tonnes. Some 46 sugar factories were operating during the season.

SUGAR PRODUCTION IN UKRAINE AS OF DECEMBER 4 AMOUNTES TO 1.5 MLN TONNES

Sugar production in Ukraine as of December 4 amounted to 1.517 million tonnes. According to the Ukrtsukor National Association of Sugar Producers, at present sugar refineries in the country have processed 11.25 million tonnes of sugar beets. As reported, Ukraine started a new sugar making season on August 31.
In 2018, the area under sugar beets was 280,000 hectares, which is 13% less than in 2017.
Ukraine exported 560,400 tonnes of sugar in the 2017/2018 agricultural year (September-August), which is 27.2% less than in the previous agri-year. Sugar production in the 2017/2018 agri-year increased by 6.5% and amounted to 2.14 million tonnes. Some 46 sugar factories were operating during the season.

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