GIEWS Country Brief: Kazakhstan - Reference Date: 04-November-2019

FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT

  • Cereal production in 2019 estimated at below-average levels

  • Below-average exports forecast in 2019/20

  • Export prices of wheat increased in last two months

Cereal production in 2019 estimated at below-average levels

Harvesting of all the 2019 cereal crops was completed by end-October and the aggregate production is estimated at 17.9 million tonnes, 5 percent below the five-year average. The result is on account of a reduced production of wheat, set at 11.5 million tonnes, about 18 percent below the average due to warmer and drier-than-average weather conditions between June and August, which negatively affected yields in the key wheat-producing northern province of Kostanay. In addition, the area planted with wheat continued its declining trend, reflecting the Government directive aiming at progressively reducing all wheat (spring and winter) planted area from 12.4 million hectares in 2016 to 10.1 million hectares in 2021, in favour of more profitable oil crops. Barley production is estimated at a bumper level of 4.5 million tonnes, due to record plantings, officially set at 3 million hectares.

Planting of the 2020 winter wheat crops (output of which generally amounts to about 5 percent of the total annual wheat production) is ongoing under overall favourable weather conditions and it is expected to be finalized by the end of November. Crops will be harvested between June and September next year.

Below-average exports forecast in 2019/20

Total cereal exports in the 2019/20 marketing year (July/June), are forecast at about 8 million tonnes, about 8 percent below the average and a five-year low. Exports of wheat are forecast at 6.5 million tonnes, 15 percent below the average volume on account of the 2019 reduced domestic output. By contrast, barley exports are forecast well above the average at 1.3 million tonnes, amid bumper production and strong demand from international markets.