Ukraine soybean area to shrink as profit falls

KIEV, Ukraine (Reuters) — The area sown for soybeans in Ukraine is likely to shrink by 14 to 17 percent this year due to an expected decrease in profits for the crop, analyst UkrAgroConsult said recently.

Ukraine harvested 3.89 million tonnes of soybean from 4.7million acres in 2017.

“Soybean margins will decrease almost by half to 25.4 percent in 2017. Combined with tax innovations, this will make growers less interested in this crop and entail a 200,000 to 300,000 hectare (495,000 to 740,000 acre) cut in plantings for the 2018 harvest,” the consultancy said in a report.

Last year, the Ukrainian parliament cancelled a value-added tax refund for exports of oilseeds from Sept 1, 2018, a move which could cause a significant decrease in Ukrainian purchasing prices and prompt growers to reduce sowing area.

Ukraine, which produced only about 120,000 tonnes of soybeans in 2000-01, has boosted its soybean exports to 1.5 million tonnes so far for the 2017-18 season.

The country exported a total of 3.5 million tonnes of oilseeds so far in 2017-18, 52 percent more than for the same period in the previous crop year, according to Ukrainian state statistics service.

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