The Ukrainian Agricultural Policy and Food Ministry has asked grain traders operating on the domestic market to refrain from exporting wheat until the situation with the reseeding of winter crops clarifies.

"We are calling on traders, while signing contracts, to carefully look in the next two months at wheat on the domestic market and not to include it in the list of priority interests. Barley and corn can be included in the list. It is important that we do not export the amount that will be critical for the domestic market," Director of the Department on Agricultural Markets at the Ukrainian Agricultural Policy and Food Ministry Serhiy Kvasha said, according to UKRINFORM.

He said that in the absence of clear estimates of the possible loss of winter crops, Ukraine should not actively export wheat.

"The estimates of the reseeding of winter crops currently range between two and three million hectares. The gap of one million hectares is high enough," Kvasha said.

At the same time, he said that winter crops were the main component of food grain resources.

The director of the department noted that restrained exports of wheat would help avoid the introduction of any restrictions by the government.

According to a forecast made by the Union of Agricultural Service Cooperatives, Ukraine will have to reseed at least 30% of the area under winter crops, and the expected harvest of winter wheat will not exceed 15 million tons.

Ukraine sowed 8.4 million hectares of winter crops for the 2012 harvest.

According to preliminary figures of the State Statistics Service, Ukraine harvested 56.7 million tons of grain in 2011, which was 44.3% more than in 2010.

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