Russian exporters resume trade with Turkey amid regression

Russia’s grain exporters continue to work with Turkish buyers, although Russia-Turkey relationship is not stable

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

According to traders and analysts, Russia, one of the largest wheat exporters, has restarted its deals with Turkish buyers which were put on hold following the downing of a Russian warplane near the Turkish border over an airspace violation in November.

Since the incident, Russia and Turkey have abstained from signing new agreements, which could have scared off Moscow to put aside its exportations according to analysts and traders. However, their fears did not become a reality with trade resuming between the two countries.

"Concerns over possible supply disruption to the Turkish market, which existed in late November, early December, have not materialised," said Andrey Sizov, managing director of SovEcon agriculture consultancy.

A Moscow based grain trader said, referring to Turkish buyers, "We have no problem, they are buying from us." Another trader from Russia said that exports to Turkey will resume and there aren’t any informal limitations from Moscow so far.

A consultant also said that Turkish buyers were continuing to sign new agreements with Russian exporters.

Rosselkhoznadorz, Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance in Russia was not ready for comment on Thursday, however, earlier in December they confirmed that supplies to Turkey were proceeding as normal.

Following the downing of the Russian plane, Moscow reacted to Turkey by restricting food imports and tourism to Turkey and also indicated that it could suspend primary infrastructure projects with Ankara.

"Turkey continues buying Russian wheat as the French origin is more expensive, while the Ukrainian origin does not meet their needs in terms of wheat quality," said Arkady Zlochevsky, the head of Russia's Grain Union, a non-government farmers' lobby group.

Ankara has been the second largest buyer of Russian wheat, with importing 1.7 million tonnes after Egypt in the 2015/2016 marketing year which started on July 1.

TRTWorld and agencies