Russian gov lowers the wheat, corn tax for Nov 29-Dec 5 dates

24 Nov 2023 | Masha Belikova

The Russian government has significantly lowered the wheat and corn export taxes for the week of November 29-December 5, an official document from the agriculture ministry showed on Friday.

The wheat export tax was lowered by RUB575,20/mt to RUB3820.20/mt, which is equivalent to around $43.50/mt according to the official exchange rate of the Central Bank of RUB88.12 to the $1.

At the same time, the underlying index published by the Moscow Exchange (MOEX) has moved down by $1.10/mt to $253.70/mt.

That is still far from the current levels seen on the physical market, even though the prices have been on the increase throughout the week, as currently the highest offer seen in the market was at $245/mt for 12.5% protein wheat for January loading, while the last time FOB ideas for Russian wheat were seen in the $250/mt area was back in August 2023.

At the same time, in recent months trade has switched towards contracts on a delivered basis to avoid showing the physical FOB prices as these can be below the unofficial floor price, which can explain the big gap between the FOB levels seen in the market and the underlying index used for tax calculations.

For corn, the export tariff was moved down by RUB371.30/mt to RUB642.00/mt, equivalent to $7.28/mt, while the seven-day average value has moved up by 10 cents to $189.70/mt.

Finally, the government left the barley export tax unchanged at zero, while the basis index went up by 60 cents to $165.80/mt.

When calculating the index for corn and barley, transactions registered with loading in the ports of the Caspian Sea, as well as ports of the Azov and Black Seas are currently taken into account.

Along with that, starting from December 1 Russia has banned the export of durum wheat until June 1.

Also, starting from February 15 and until July 1, Russian grain export will only be possible within the 24 million mt export quota.