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UPDATE 3-Argentine agriculture ministry says it lifts corn export limit

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BUENOS AIRES, Jan 12 (Reuters) - Argentina said on Tuesday it lifted a 30,000-tonne-per-day limit recently placed on corn exports, which had caused farmers to go on a sales strike in protest.

Growers have withheld crops from market since early Monday, angered by what they said was overzealous intervention in the markets. The government said the curb was intended to ensure ample domestic food supplies and stable prices.

As part of a deal negotiated with farm groups and export companies on Tuesday, the agriculture ministry said a commission would be named to monitor domestic corn prices.

“These meetings allow us to continue advancing in making private interests compatible with the need of the state to guarantee essential goods throughout the national territory,” the ministry’s statement said.

The three-day sales strike had caused concern in a country desperate for export dollars as it contends with a long recession and the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 30,000-tonne limit on corn exports replaced an earlier government decision to suspend all corn shipments in January and February. Farmers slammed both measures as unnecessary.

Reporting by Maximilian Heath; Writing by Hugh Bronstein; Editing by by Mark Heinrich and Richard Pullin