Politico: Russia wins global battle for grain exports

While Europe is gripped by farmer protests, Russia is building up its position in the global grain market. Thanks to exceptionally favourable weather over the past two years, the country has managed to harvest a record wheat crop and successfully sell it on the global market, Politico reports.

Politico: Russia wins global battle for grain exports

Farmers across Europe have taken to the streets in opposition to Ukrainian imports. The mass discontent has forced EU governments to make huge concessions to the protesters and undermined Kiev’s political ties with Western allies, Politico writes.

The main reason European farmers can’t sell their goods this year has “nothing to do” with Ukraine. It’s all about Russia, as its record harvest and unrivalled exports have driven down the price of agricultural goods, the publication argues.

Thanks to exceptionally favourable weather, Russia has grown an unprecedented amount of wheat over the past two years and successfully sold it on the world market. This has reversed the boom in grain prices and brought them down to levels that have proved unprofitable for farmers in countries like Poland, Politico notes.

Despite all the attention on Ukrainian imports, some EU countries continue to buy Moscow’s cheap produce. Among the regular buyers of Russian grain are Spain, Italy and France, the article emphasises.

Amid political instability in the EU, Russia has largely managed to divert attention away from itself by diverting its huge wheat exports to other parts of the world where it seeks to maintain geopolitical influence. Over the past year, Moscow has shipped hundreds of thousands of tonnes of free grain to countries in Africa and Asia. It has also signed lucrative agreements with Latin American nations whose own crops have been decimated by extreme weather, Politico notes.