The millers of Kazakhstan propose to restrict the export of grain from the country

Flour-milled offer to ban export of wheat from Kazakhstan this season. They consider this measure necessary because the grain yield is low, and because selling value-added products (flour) abroad is much more profitable for the country.

Let us recall that Elbasy set the task within five years to increase the volume of exports of processed agricultural products by 2.5 times in the Message to the People of Kazakhstan in 2018. The President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Kasym-Zhomart Tokaev, also emphasized the same in his first address: “It Is Necessary to depart from the raw-material orientation of agricultural exports, which reached 70%, while processing enterprises are loaded by only 40%.”

The nature itself is pushing this decision this season: the summer turned out to be arid, which did not allow the grain to fall fully. Now, in September, bad weather prevents cleaning. All these factors suggest in advance that the volume of grain received will be much smaller than last year’s.

— The harvesting began on August 15 in Karaganda region, — said the correspondent of “KazakhZerno.kz” Dosmukasan Taukebaev, director of the large flourmill “Mutlu” in Karaganda – That is, the harvest has been going for three weeks and almost half of the area is cut. Therefore, the overall situation is clear. I do not know what the outcome will be shown by the statistics, but what we see is from 4 to 10 centners per hectare, depending on the area. At the beginning of October, when the harvest is complete, we will get the final picture. However, in any case, we expect that the region’s crops will be twice as low as last year’s. That is, at the level of 450 thousand tons. Given that in our region 24 large flourmill enterprises, the received volume of grain will be enough only for work within two months. The remaining 10 months will have to be imported from somewhere. Moreover, this is the additional cost of transportation, which will affect the cost of such socially significant goods as flour. So we are already alarmed by the situation, we are preparing letters to the authorities to consider the possibility of introducing a ban on the export of raw materials. That is, you do not need to sell wheat abroad – you need to sell flour.

The harvest is much lower than last year’s one is expected in other regions that make up the grain belt of Kazakhstan – Kostanay, Akmola, North Kazakhstan. Rain is also coming there, and the combines cannot get out in the field. Moisture and possible early frosts threaten to worsen both the volume and the quality of the harvest. According to forecasts, if last year Kazakhstan received 14 million tons of wheat, then in the current year it is expected about 10 million tons.

Against this background, the flour-monomers study the market and look for options to close the possible shortage of raw materials. In particular, we are considering the possibility of grain deliveries from the border regions of the Russian Federation. So far, it is planned, but if the situation will cause, of course, all this will affect the cost of flour – it will increase in price. This would not be allowed to anyone, given that the population is so difficult, and flour is a socially significant commodity. Therefore, the processors and raise the question of the need to ban the export of wheat in this season. This is a hard method, but efficient, they say. In addition, fears that part of wheat will remain unclaimed, they reject, as they are ready to work over all Kazakhstan grain. And they note that this approach will correspond to the policy of the country’s leadership and will benefit the economy.

“Both Elbasy and the President talk about the need to increase the volume of exports of processed products,” recalls Dosmukasan Taukebaev. – But many officials do exactly the opposite. Instead of supporting our recycling, they all reduce to the shipment of raw materials. This is a huge damage to our economy. Look, to send for export 1000 tons of flour, it is necessary to provide work from 70 to 130 people. Moreover, three people are enough to export 1000 tons of wheat. This is the loss of jobs. In addition, if a ton of flour can be sold at $ 300, then a ton of grain – only $ 180. That is, $120 per ton of foreign exchange revenue is declining.

The flour industry of Kazakhstan experienced the peak of development in 2008 – 2011, when Kazakhstan came to the first place in the world for the export of goods. Unfortunately, for a number of reasons our country lost the leadership of Turkey. However, nonetheless, the potential remains high, and in many regions, flourmill enterprises are the backbone of the economy. Therefore, if in the Karaganda region there are 24 large mills, then in Kostanay – 70. In addition, this is not counting small producers of flour. If the raw materials are available and the state supports exports, grain processors are confident that they can regain leadership by providing flour to all Of Central Asia – Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan. There is also a great potential for flour export to China – three mills in the Karaganda region already have permission to ship to China.

“IN any case, we do not lose optimism,” said Dosmukasan Taukebaev. — We Look at the development of the situation and wish our peasants to receive a high quality harvest. We are ready to buy their grain and process!

Sergey Byayanov

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