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Azarov: Grain harvest losses in Ukraine estimated at 8 million tons for this year

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Aug. 2, 2012, 5:38 p.m. | Business — by Interfax-Ukraine

Ukraine's Prime Minister Mykola Azarov
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Zaporizhia - Grain losses in Ukraine this year might reach 8 million tonnes, the country's Prime Minister Mykola Azarov told journalists during a working visit to Zaporizhia on Thursday.

"Speculators have raised their heads but, despite the forecast high price for grain this year, prices for bread, milk, butter and other food products in Ukraine won't increase unlike the situation with the poor harvests in 2003 and 2010. The state has large food and grain reserves, which will support the Ukrainian market," he said.

Ukraine's Ministry of Agricultural Policy forecasts the country's grain harvest this year at 45.3 million tonnes. Expert and official forecasts have been adjusted several times because of unfavorable weather conditions such as drought and anomalously high temperatures. Ukraine's grain harvest was a record 56.7 million tonnes in 2011.

According to Azarov, the grain harvest in Zaporizhia region decreased this year by 800,000 tonnes to 1.4 million tonnes from 2.2 million tonnes last year.

He added that prices for bread and other food products in Ukraine will remain stable.

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