An agreement to allow grain shipments from Ukraine is helping increase global supplies of wheat and corn. Veronica Nigh, American Farm Bureau Federation Senior Economist, says several shipments are leaving Ukraine now.
“Certainly, with the establishment of the export corridor, we’re starting to see a lot more ships leaving Ukraine than before. A total of 33 cargo ships have left Ukraine under the deal with another 18 vessels that are now loading or waiting for permission to leave Ukrainian ports.”
Nigh says the exports are welcome but could stop at any time.
“Just today (Tuesday), the U.S. government urged Americans in Ukraine to leave the country immediately, warning that Russia is stepping up efforts to launch attacks on civilian infrastructure and government facilities in the coming days. Obviously, that would impact Ukraine’s ability to export products, so it’s certainly a delicate situation and that corridor could go away at any particular time.”
However, the exports from Ukraine are improving global supplies.
“USDA increased Ukraine’s exports of wheat three million metric tons, about half of where they were last year, but that was an improvement from their projections the month before the corridor existed. Each month, global production estimates are getting a little stronger as those crops fill out. USDA’s projections for global wheat exports puts us up five percent this year relative to last year because some other major producers are having larger crop years. The global situation is becoming a little bit less tight than it was just a few months ago.”