Conflict between Ukraine and Russia enhances Romania’s export outlook on grain market


At the start of the year, Romania exported agri-food products worth EUR 360.8 million, particularly corn and wheat.

The conflict between Russia and Ukraine might offer Romania the chance to become an important contributor to the grain market in the Black Sea Basin this year, given that Ukraine has stopped growing crops in the areas it used to.
“Ukraine’s ability to attain international loans is becoming increasingly harder and its input has gone up by 50 percent. Therefore, if Romania’s agricultural production this year is maintained at last year’s levels, our country will have the chance to significantly impact export prices, in particular where the Black Sea Basin is concerned,” Daniel Botanoiu, Secretary of State with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MADR), stated for Agerpres.
In January 2014, Romania exported agri-food products worth a total of EUR 360.8 million, up by 44 percent (c. EUR 109.3 million) compared with the same period of 2013, and the products most widely exported at the start of the year were corn, wheat, and cigarettes, according to data provided by MADR. In the first month of the year, intra-Community deliveries increased by 45.7 percent from the same period of 2013, to EUR 229.2 million, whereas deliveries to third party countries amounted to EUR 131.6 million, thus reporting a 39.7 percent growth. According to MADR, corn contributed the most to January 2014 export figures with 291,000 tons of corn bringing in EUR 86.8 million and an approx. 76 percent surplus compared with the same period last year, as well as accounting for 24.1 percent of the overall export value. 294,300 tons of wheat contributed EUR 60.6 million, on the rise by 152 percent from January 2013, and accounted for 16.8 percent of the overall export value. Cigar and cigarette exports – amounting to around 2,400 tons – brought in EUR 39.3 million (10.9 percent of the overall export value), while sunflower seeds – 99,400 tons – contributed EUR 35.6 million and accounted for 9.9 percent of the overall value. The revenue resulting from the export of 25,100 tons of sunflower oil was EUR 17.2 million and accounted for 4.8 percent of the overall export value in January 2014. Additional revenue of EUR 3.1 million was generated by higher nut export figures and cheaper export prices compared with the reference period. However, a decline in live cattle (3,000 tons) and poultry meat (4,800 tons) exports has had a negative impact on the contributions brought by these product categories, namely 30.7 percent and 14.7 percent, respectively, and had led to a decrease in revenues by EUR 3.5 million and EUR 1.7 million, respectively, compared with last January.
Agri-food product imports have reported a 3.3 percent decline in January 2014 as a result of lower agri-food product demand from third party countries, and brought in a total contribution of EUR 325.3 million. In the same month, intra-Community imports went up by 9.6 percent compared with last January, to EUR 276.9 million, but imports to third party countries dropped by 20.6 percent to EUR 48.4 million. Pork still occupies first place where imports are concerned, with 9,300 tons of pork exported in January 2014. The European Union was Romania’s main agricultural trade partner. Thus, agri-food product deliveries to the EU accounted for 63.5 percent and purchases made by EU Member States accounted for 85.1 percent. The agri-food trade surplus in January 2014 was EUR 33.5 million, compared with EUR 84.4 million last January.

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