Romania. Will Ukrainian grain compete effectively with Romanian grains in 2023/24 season?

Source:  UkrAgroConsult
Author:  Maksym Kharchenko

Article author:

Maksym Kharchenko
Freight Market Analyst

After the first round of talks in Istanbul on grain corridor extension, the Turkish officials said they expected the agreement to be extended for 2 months. Anyway, last Friday May 12, the grain corridor was only open for outbound ships. This may indicate the last days of the corridor operation. 

That is why UkrAgroConsult continues to analyze alternative routes for Ukrainian agricultural exports.

One of the possible routes for grain exports is transshipment in the Romanian port of Constanta. This port exported 24 M mt of grains in 2022, which is 5% less than in the record-breaking 2021 (25.2 M mt). However, these statistics do not include 3.7 M mt of oilseeds, veg oils and meals, also shipped in 2022. And this record was in a year with low harvest in Romania (according to UkrAgroConsult, the 2022 grain production was 18.6 M mt).

Estimates of the Constanta’s grain transshipment capacity in 2023 vary from 30 to 34 M mt, incl.  21-25 M mt will be transshipped through the Port terminals, and another 9 M mt will be transshipped by floating cranes. UkrAgroConsult estimates Constanta Port storage capacity at 2 M mt of agricultural products. 

In 2023/24 MY, Romania grain harvest is expected at 24.9 M mt. Indirectly it means there will be less room for Ukrainian grain in the supply chain thru Romania. Constanta Port operator Comvex Company said the terminals will rather give preference to traditional customers and these preferences will be especially noticeable in the first months of the new agricultural season (June-Sept 2023) with the arrival of wheat harvest to the port elevators. 

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