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Russia considering restrictions on grain exports

Russia is likely to impose additional restrictions on grain exports after February 1, according to Agriculture Minister Alexei Gordeyev.

Meeting representatives of 19 foreign embassies in Moscow, Gordeyev said additional restrictions will be introduced if Russia's exports exceed 13 million tonnes by February.

“Any country must ensure its own food security and maintain the balance between production and consumption,” he said.

Gordeyev blamed speculation caused by high prices for encouraging export growth while, at the same time, the domestic market is experiencing a deficit. However, he believes that the prices will stay ‘relatively high’ after the possible restrictions, encouraging investment in grain production.

Then, as soon as the situation on the domestic market is stable, all restrictions will be lifted.

According to the Agriculture Ministry, with Russian grain production exceeding 90 million tonnes, annual exports could reach 20-25 million tonnes instead of the current 13 million tones.