Restrictive measures on food exports continue to expand

The Ministry of Agriculture presented a draft government decree to extend the duty on rapeseed and an indefinite duty on soybeans.

Currently, the export duty on rapeseed is 30% (not less than €165 per ton), soybeans — 20% (not less than $100 per ton).

Sunflower export duty is set at 50% (not less than $320 per ton).

Introduced on July 1, 2021, duties on rapeseed, soybeans and sunflower seeds were due to expire on September 1, 2022.

The export duty on sunflower has already been extended for a year with the export ban until August 31, 2022.

Earlier, First Deputy Minister of Agriculture Oksana Lut pointed to the fact that restrictions on sunflower exports will not be lifted until all production capacities for its processing are loaded.

Today, the capacity of existing processing enterprises is designed for 18 million tons.

Last year, Russian farmers harvested 15.5 million tons of seeds (a record).

Analysts forecast an even higher harvest this year:

Sunflower – 16 million tons

Soybean — 5.4 million tons

Rape – 3.6 million tons

Oil flax – 1.5 million tons

Total oilseed production may increase from 24.84 million tons to 26.89 million tons.

Not all analysts agree with the need to extend export duties: according to some of them, this initiative has nothing to do with food security, since soybean and rapeseed products are practically not used on the domestic market and are mostly exported.

Accordingly, the oil processing enterprises become the beneficiary, and agricultural producers may lose the market price, which, in turn, will reduce incentives for production.

Processors are confident in the effectiveness of the proposed restrictive measures, as they will ensure the supply of raw materials to enterprises in the domestic market, thereby protecting long-term investments in soybean and rapeseed processing.

Indeed, the imposed duties on the export of soybeans and rapeseed have already proved their effectiveness: this season, rapeseed exports have decreased by 1.5 times, soybean exports have doubled (compared to the 2020/2021 season). And this is with a much larger volume harvest.

Guaranteed supply of raw materials to processing enterprises will allow the existing capacities to be reactivated. This is especially true for the Far East.

In addition, the export of processed products is much more profitable, the demand for them in the world is not falling.

As a result, the budget should receive additional funds, and jobs will be provided in the regions.