Russian Grain Bottleneck

They might have lots of grain to sell, and they might be "never knowingly undersold" but even once the sale is made it still has to be delivered.

Therein lies the problem, with Russian railway authority RZhD putting a temporary ban on the movement of grain into the Black Sea port of Novorossiisk as thousands of unloaded railcars back up on the approaches to the docks.

Russian exports via Ukraine have virtually ceased in the aftermath of the recent gas dispute, with just 100 railcars reportedly passing through that route during January, a fraction of what would normally go through.

Russia has also reduced the rail tariff for grain exported via Russian ports, but not those via Ukraine.

The grain terminal at Novorossiisk is said to be capable of handling around half a million tonnes/month of exports.

Russia expects to export 18-20 million tonnes of grain in the current marketing year.