Russian wheat export prices rose for the second consecutive week last week ahead of an upcoming wheat export tax, analysts said on Monday, adding that trade was thin before the long New Year holiday.
Russian wheat with 12.5% protein loading from Black Sea ports for supply before mid-February was at $262 a tonne on a free-on-board (FOB) basis at the end of last week, up $5 from the week before, the IKAR agriculture consultancy said in a note.
Sovecon said wheat and barley export prices rose by $2 to $261 a tonne and $220 a tonne, respectively. Russia will be on public holiday on Jan 1-10.
Sovecon downgraded its estimate for Russia's 2020/21 wheat exports in a separate note due to the wheat export tax which Russia plans from Feb. 15 to June 30.
IKAR said that wheat for supply after mid-February, when the export tax is launched, was quoted at $270 per tonne.
A delay in getting Russian customs papers, reported by some grain traders to Reuters earlier this month, has become less widespread and has been reduced to 3-5 days, Sovecon said.
There are, however, delays in providing grain railcars for transportation to southern export ports, it said.
"Some traders cannot book railcars for January but we doubt that there is a nationwide plot to halt exports before mid-February," Sovecon said.