Russia extends grain export ban

The Ministry of Agriculture says Russia has collected 62.3 million tonnes of grain with about 1 million hectares remained to be threshed, with the government announcing the extension of a grain export ban.

This year, despite the abnormal weather Russia has taken in about 60 million tonnes of grain according to Prime Minister Vladimir Putin speaking on Friday in Rostov-on-Don.

"Despite the bad weather conditions, the drought, Russia harvested about 60 million tonnes of grain."

Putin added that the key focus would now turn to domestic supply.

"This is the amount that was generally predicted, now we know exactly what resources we have and what the grain balance is going to be."

In early September, the Ministry of Agriculture said that to stabilize the situation after the drought, 85-90 million tons of grain should be collected in 2011. Following the warning the Russian government extended the ban on grain exports until July 1, 2011, Prime Minister Putin added.

“The collected harvest volume is enough for domestic needs including for the needs of livestock. Yet, we will keep the ban on export. The stability of our domestic food market is our priority. Yesterday I signed a government resolution extending the moratorium on grain exports until July 1, 2011.”

Analysts from Unicredit Securities believe the move might help to ease inflationary pressures in early 2011.