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Country Briefs

  Republic of Moldova

Reference Date: 08-April-2016

FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT

  1. Cereal production forecast to recover in 2016 after sharp drought‑induced decline in 2015

  2. Wheat imports in 2015/16 (July/June) anticipated to increase

  3. Prices of wheat flour and potatoes increased in early 2016

Cereal production forecast to recover in 2016 after sharp drought‑induced decline in 2015

Winter cereal plantings for harvest in 2016 started late last autumn due to unfavourable dry conditions but farmers continued sowing into November and the area planted is reported to have increased by 8 percent to 350 000 hectares. It is reported that crops overwintered well despite cold conditions. FAO’s early forecast for 2016 cereal production stands at 2.5 million tonnes, 14 percent up from the previous year, assuming that yields return to average after the drought‑reduced levels in the previous year.

Latest estimates put the 2015 cereal production at 2.2 million tonnes, 24 percent below the previous year’s level and below the average of the past five years due to a drought during the summer. Most of the decrease is on the account of reduced maize production, which fell by 31 percent to 1.1 million tonnes, while wheat production fell 16 percent to 920 000 tonnes.

Wheat imports in 2015/16 (July/June) anticipated to increase

As a result of the smaller cereal output of 2015, in particular wheat, total cereal imports are expected to rise to 75 000 tonnes in 2015/16, an increase of 25 percent compared to the previous year’s below‑average level. In addition, following the decrease in cereal output, total exports are forecast to fall by almost 25 percent to 240 000 tonnes.

Prices of wheat flour and potatoes increased in early 2016

Due to a shortfall in wheat production last year, prices for wheat increased by more than 40 percent since the beginning of 2016 and were around 25 percent above their values in March 2015.

Prices of potatoes, production of which fell by 41 percent in 2015, decreased slightly from the previous month but remained 50 percent above their year‑earlier levels.