Ukrainian grain exports this month much lower than in May 2021 - ministry

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Ukrainian flag is covered with grains in this picture illustration taken May 9, 2022. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

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KYIV, May 19 (Reuters) - Ukraine has exported 643,000 tonnes of grain since the start of May, considerably less than during the same period of last year when it sold 1.8 million tonnes abroad, the agriculture ministry said on Thursday.

The volume has shrunk because of logistical problems since Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24 and blocked Ukraine's Black sea ports, the main routes for Ukrainian grain exports.

The ministry said May's volume included about 617,000 tonnes of corn, 16,000 tonnes of wheat and 8,000 tonnes of barley. It did not say how the grain was delivered.

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Senior agriculture officials have said Ukraine exported up to 300,000 tonnes of grain in March and 1.09 million tonnes in April. read more

Ukrainian traders managed to export up to 6 million tonnes of grain per month before Russia's invasion.

The ministry data showed that Ukraine has exported 46.51 million tonnes so far in the 2021/22 July-June season, versus 40.85 million a season earlier.

The ministry said 2021/22 export volumes included 18.54 million tonnes of wheat, 21.83 million tonnes of corn and 5.68 million tonnes of barley.

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Reporting by Natalia Zinets, Editing by Timothy Heritage

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