Tatarstan, Bashkortostan to buy Kazakh grain
Kazakhstan, Astana, Aug. 25 / Trend S.Suleymanov /
Due to recent droughts, Tatarstan and Bashkortostan will purchase large volumes of Kazakh grain this year, a Kazakh official told Trend today.
"We received a letter of intention from Bashkortostan to purchase our wheat," Director of the Kazakh Agriculture Ministry's Agriculture Department Anna Buts said.
Moreover, Russian Deputy Agriculture Minister Alexander Belyaev also recently discussed Tatarstan's possible purchase of Kazakh wheat during a telephone conversation with his Kazakh counterpart Saktash Khasenov, she added.
The exact volume will be discussed during an upcoming visit of Tatar officials to Astana, Buts said.
Although Russia is also a large grain producer, Kazakh grain supplies to the country traditionally ranged from 1.5 million to 2 million tons per year until 2007, she said.
"Basically, our clients were Russia's Asian regions of Chelyabinsk and Omsk, as well as Moscow, its largest metropolis," Buts said.
"The Moscow government annually buys about 300,000 tons for use as an enhancer," she said.
Kazakhstan's major grain producers will increase their supplies to Russia, the Caucasus, Iran and Central Asia this year, Kazakh National Company Food Contract Corporation Commercial Affairs Managing Director Daulet Uvashev told Trend earlier.
Uvashev added that traditionally Kazakhstan supplied about 800,000 tons to Azerbaijan and Georgia each year. The figure may increase to 2 million tons this year. Kazakhstan can safely absorb these volumes. About 4 million will be exported to Central Asia and Afghanistan.
According to official figures, Kazakhstan's export potential will reach 8 million tons of grain this year. The expected harvest is 14-15 million tons.
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