Uruguay to complete first shipment of barley to China this month: report

9 Feb 2021 | Juan Pedro Tomas

Uruguay is expected to ship its first cargo of barley to China this month after first approving the country as a supplier to the Chinese market back in February 2019.

Local newspaper El Observador reported that the initial shipment of 35,000 mt is scheduled to depart from the Nueva Palmira port this month.

Ruber Martinez, director at the port operator Corporacion Navios said that this shipment is exceptional as the country does not usually export barley, as it is mostly oriented for consumption in the domestic market.

“I believe that this is a very interesting news as Uruguay has the capacity to produce and export barley as it currently does with wheat. With this initial shipment we can open up new opportunities to export this grain,” he said.

According to the report, the protocol conditions signed by China and Uruguay for this initial barley shipment will be revealed later this month.

The Chinese General Administration of Customs (CGAC) originally approved the import of corn and barley from Uruguay into China two years ago, with the imports subject to GMO regulations in China and can only be imported through "designated ports" and processed by "designated crushers".

Uruguay is expected to export 100,000 mt of barley in the 2020/21 crop cycle, according to the latest report by the USDA, nearly double the 41,000 mt exported in the previous crop.

Meanwhile, China is expected to import a total of 7 million mt of barley in the current cycle, up from 5.97 million mt in the 2019/20 crop, according to the USDA.