* Ukraine seen exhausting exportable wheat stocks by Nov
* Domestic prices rise following global trend
* Export duties seen most likely
(Adds quotes, details)
By Pavel Polityuk
KIEV, Sept 6 Ukraine may limit wheat exports in
early 2013 in a bid to prevent a jump in domestic grain prices
after the wheat harvest declined this year, traders and analysts
said on Thursday.
Ukraine's Agriculture ministry and grain traders' unions
earlier this week agreed on 2012/13 maximum export volumes at
19.4 million tonnes of grain, including 4.0 million of wheat.
Traders said the export figures would be reviewed every
They said the former Soviet republic had already exported
1.3 million tonnes of wheat and that the rest of the agreed
volume might be sold abroad in the next two or three months,
which could become a formal reason to impose export curbs.
"In the near future we can expect an announcement on
forthcoming restrictions for wheat exports," a foreign trader
European traders have said wheat exports from the Black Sea
region could run dry by October-November, whether or not
restrictions are imposed.
A Ukrainian trader said Kiev might export about 1.6 million
tonnes of wheat in September-October, exhausting the agreed
volume for the whole 2012/13 season.
"The limits might come into force in January 2013," he said.
The wheat harvest in Ukraine, which faced poor weather
during wheat sowing and growing, fell to 16.3 million tonnes
bunker weight in 2012. Bunker weight usually exceeds clean
weight by 5 to 7 percent.
Analysts and traders forecast the 2012 wheat crop at about
14 million tonnes in clean weight, down from 22.3 million tonnes
clean weight in 2011.
With domestic consumption of about 12 million tonnes and
several million tonnes of wheat in stocks, Ukraine has an
exportable surplus of about 5 million to 6 million tonnes,
"We see a rise in domestic prices, which are following the
global market. We think that the proposed 4 million tonnes of
wheat for exports is an attempt to cool the local market," said
a trader from a large foreign grain house.
Analysts said the government has no other options but to
limit exports if it wants to keep domestic prices at a stable
and low level.
"In October, global wheat prices could traditionally rise,
and Ukraine should take measures to prevent a similar rise
inside the country," said Mykola Vernytsky, an analyst with the
"In any case, Ukraine must limit exports because it has no
other options to keep prices stable."
Ukrainian domestic soft milling wheat prices rose to an
average of $242 per tonne ex-farm as of Sept. 3 from $226 in
mid-July and $206 in mid-June.
Traders said that export duties could be the best option.
Ukraine imposed export duties in the first four months of
the 2011/12 season, and the move kept at least 3 million tonnes
of grain inside the country.
(Reporting by Pavel Polityuk; Editing by Veronica Brown and