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Asian importers stock up on grain

Азиатските вносители се запасяват със зърно
Asian operators are likely to increase purchases, expecting global wheat supplies to fall in the coming months as dry weather has reduced production in some of the key exporting countries.

Wheat importers, including from Indonesia, the world's No. 2 buyer, and China were actively seeking cargoes this week for shipment in December and early 2024, local trade sources said.

"There are expectations that prices have bottomed and the market will rise from current levels as Australia, Argentina and Canada face adverse weather conditions," said a Singapore-based trader at an international trading company that sells Australian and Black Sea cargoes in Asia.

"Supplies are expected to be much larger at the end of this year and the beginning of next year compared to what we have seen in the last six months," the trader added.

"In recent days, we have seen increased buying interest," said another trader working for a company that supplies wheat to China and other countries. "This trend is likely to continue and we expect demand to pick up over the next few weeks."

"StoneX has cut its forecast for Australia-wide wheat production to 24 million tonnes and expects other crops to be similarly affected," said Stefan Mayer, grain broker at StoneX in Sydney.

Australia is the world's second largest exporter of wheat and a key supplier to Asian nations including China, Indonesia and Japan. After months of low rainfall and in the midst of an intense heatwave, the Australian Bureau of Meteorology this week confirmed that the El Niño weather pattern is in full force and dry conditions are likely to continue.

The lack of rain could also affect the Rosario exchange's forecast for Argentina's wheat production of 15 million tonnes in 2023/24, while it could also reduce the forecast for 56 million tonnes of maize in 2023/24 .

A separate weather report on Wednesday said most of Argentina's farmland, as well as northwestern Paraguay, would receive less than 10 milliliters of rain in the coming days.

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