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Sergey Levin (Agriculture Ministry)

I believe that the II World Grain Forum in Sochi was extremely successful. This is due to many factors and the situation on the world grain market, and objective changes which have taken place in Russia in terms of grain production.

Russia has become the largest operator and the player on the world grain market, which controls virtually 10% of the market. It has been a period of time when the whole world could see this and appreciate it.

Corn - a large set of different cultures. Some of them grow well in Russian, some require different geo-climatic conditions. No country in the world does not cover the entire range of food, and there is always a specialty of the countries. Russia historically very strong in producing and selling wheat. No one will give up to his trump card to give to someone else. But we need more cards in hand, we need to increase production.

Take an example - Fig. A few years ago we were quite a significant importer of rice. Two or three years ago, we first achieved self-sufficiency and are now actively embarking on sales of rice for export. The same can happen with corn and soybeans, because we need to saturate our market, but we certainly intend to sell this product more. There is still an underestimated culture like peas, which, in spite of quantitative limitations, is a very interesting export product. You know that whole cultures of cuisine are based on peas in the Middle East region, no one prevents us from moving in this direction too, without giving up the one where we have a historical advantage.

The ministers, in particular the Minister of Agriculture of Turkey, the heads of world organizations, representatives of the countries producing grain and traditional buyers of our grain, the largest grain traders took part in the forum. All of them agree: Russia has become and certainly will be the largest and most influential player in the grain market. Everyone - from the UN Food and Agriculture Organization to the largest buyer countries - has an understanding that Russia needs to be considered that Russia is a point of growth both in the fight against the world hunger and in the fight against food shortages in those markets where it is essential Is felt. And that, in fact, Russia is a reserve fund for saturation of the market with quality grain.

Our long-term goal is to double the volume of our exports. When we consider the strategy of development of our grain economy, including export, we say that the target bar - up to 50 million tons of grain. This is a very difficult task, because the world market is growing unevenly across different cultures. We need to simultaneously solve the problem both geographically and logistically, and the task of diversifying our own production. Because it is not possible to increase exports so much at the expense of one wheat. We need to increase the product line, which we sell for export to other countries of the world. Therefore, this is a serious task, over which we will work the whole country.

I do not think, that is two or three times more that the Turkish market may be some revolutionary breakthrough that will lead to the fact that Turkey will buy 4 or 6 million tons of our grain. It is, rather, a sequential build-up volumes. For the revolution needs new markets. This is Indonesia, China, South-East Asia. These are the markets where we sell our grain is incomparably less than they could, and significantly less than our colleagues and competitors.

We view China as our strategic partner in the field of agricultural trade and cooperation in the field of agriculture. Unconditional, long-term strategic partner. This is our closest neighbor, partner. This is the largest market that is growing. Therefore, we are very persistently and systematically working with Chinese colleagues to open their market for Russian grain. You know that last December we made a significant step. We agreed with China on the first four regions for the supply of our grain. In accordance with the requirements of the Chinese market requires the separate storage of spring and winter grain, so actual shipments will begin only this year. They are now slowly starting. We are working to promote our grain to China in a variety of ways. This is the permissive work on the opening, and work on logistics, creating an efficient commodity distribution route for the sale of our grain. There is a significant infrastructure problem - for this purpose we are planning the construction of a land grain terminal Zabaikalsk - Manchuria, which will make it possible to significantly reduce the cost and speed up the supply of grain not by sea, land corridor. Now we are working with our Chinese colleagues to expand both the range of grain that they are ready to buy from Russia and the regions from which they are ready to buy. China is a very big country, they take all decisions in detail, so it does not happen as quickly as we suppose, we would like. But we are systematically and consistently, step by step, go to achieve this goal, and while moving so planned.

Sergey Levin, Deputy Minister of Agriculture of RussiaSpecial for RNS

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