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Ukraine hoping to catch up with Russian production of grain

July 23, 2013, 15:40 UTC+3

The Ministry of Agricultural Policy is pondering a range of measures that will stimulate the exports of grain

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KIEV, July 23 (Itar-Tass) - Ukraine will be building up the production of grain and stimulating as much as possible its sales on the international market, the Minister of Agrarian Policy and Foodstuffs Nikolai Prisyazhnyuk told a news conference Tuesday.

The farming sector is getting ready to take in a record big harvest of cereal crops this year and all the prerequisites for it are available, he said.

Kiev has set itself a goal of “a confident and even aggressive policy on the global market of foodstuffs and especially in its grain segment,” Prisyazhnyuk said.

“Over the next few years we’ll get on a par with Russia and will get a place in the trio of world’s top exporters,” he said.

To date, 23.5 mln tons of grain have been harvested. More specifically, the figure includes 17.2 mln tons of wheat, 5.6 mln tons of barley and 341,000 tons of rye.

“Also, we hope to get more than 25 mln tons of corn and this will set an absolute record for Ukraine,” Prisyazhnyuk said.

The Ministry of Agricultural Policy is pondering a range of measures that will stimulate the exports of grain.

“The case in hand, in part, concerns a revision of principles and patterns of domestic pricing,” as well as a cutting-down of the costs of logistics,” Prisyazhnyuk said.

“The cost of transshipment of grain in Ukraine’s seaports stands at $ 22 per ton,” he said. “The same indicator is $ 7 in Russia, $ 7.5 in France and $ 6 in the U.S.”

In the light of it, the Ministry officials say the transshipment fees may be revised and “railway fare vacations” for grain may be introduced. Also, the government may reduce the fees that various controlling agencies charge for their services.

Ukrainian farms are likely to take in a record 57 mln tons of grain this year. As many as 26 to 27 mln tons of that amount will be exported.

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