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MOSCOW: Russian wheat export prices for the old crop were mostly stable last week, supported by a stronger rouble and lower wheat prices in Chicago and Paris, analysts said on Monday.

Russian wheat with 12.5% protein loading from Black Sea ports for supply in June was at $278 a tonne free on board (FOB) at the end of last week, unchanged from the previous week, the IKAR agriculture consultancy said.

Prices for the new crop, which will arrive this summer, were at $272 per tonne as of the end of last week, but IKAR expects them to decline soon.

Sovecon, another consultancy, said that wheat prices for the old crop rose by $1 to $275 a tonne, while barley was up $3 at $250 a tonne.

Russia’s current export pace is slow, but domestic demand from exporters is strong, which Sovecon said means traders could be stocking up wheat before Russia launches its new formula-based tax on June 2.

Dry weather is expected in Russia’s spring wheat producing regions this week. “We will be watching this closely as more rains will be needed soon for early spring wheat development,” Sovecon said:

Russian farmers have sown spring wheat on 4.7 million hectares, or 36.7% of the planned area. IKAR expects them to sow a record area in the central region.

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