Vice-Minister of Agriculture of the Republic Gulmira Isaeva reported on the 14th of March that Kazakhstan intends to expand its presence in the grain market of Iran.
«In January, we signed a memorandum on wheat with Iran, and the last three years Iran was closed for us ... Iran itself produces 12-12.5 million tons of grain, but their business turned to the government to allow them to import Kazakhstan, Russian wheat interested in processing our grain and further to re-export already in the form of flour and other products to the markets of neighboring countries», - said Isaeva at a briefing in the government.
According to her, the Iranian business intends to import Kazakhstani grain as a raw material, which will then be milled at local facilities and sold as flour, both within Iran and beyond, and the Iranian mills intend to ship most of the flour for export to third countries from Kazakhstan grain.
According to her, the traditional markets for Kazakhstani grain remain the countries of Central Asia and Afghanistan, and China can also become a traditional market: according to her data, according to the results of the last marketing year, the export of Kazakhstani grain and flour to China increased 4 times.
«We say that in the next three years, the volume of exports to this country will grow to 1 million tons, but this is due to the fact that the Chinese market is quoted. We are negotiating to increase the quota for Kazakhstani enterprises and Chinese companies that buy our wheat or flour to 1 million tons», - explained the vice minister.
Also, according to her, the possibility of resuming the extensive grain trade with Georgia is currently being studied.
«Earlier we were actively present there, then we reduced it to a minimum. Now we want to restore volumes back. Thus, we are working for ourselves to restore our positions where we were previously present and open new markets», concluded Isaeva.
Until autumn 2008, Kazakhstan intended to build a terminal in the Georgian port of Poti to store 350 thousand tons of grain, but then abandoned these plans because of the conflict between Georgia and Russia: Poti was attacked and damaged during the five-day Russian-Georgian conflict.
«Money loves peace, we need stability, predictability, we are all interested in this», President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev commented on the rejection of these plans.
However, in February 2010, the then foreign ministers of Kazakhstan and Georgia discussed the possible new location of the terminal for the export of Kazakh grain. «As a result of considering the issue of exporting Kazakh grain through Georgia, we offer several options, such as Batumi, Poti, Anaklia, where we plan to build a new port», then said the Georgian Minister Foreign Affairs Grigol Vashadze.
At the same time, in Iran, Kazakhstan opened its own grain terminal in the port of Amirabad, back in 2010, which allowed the republic to additionally export half a million tons of grain along this corridor. The construction of a grain terminal in Iran was the final step in creation of a transport and logistics chain for exporting Kazakhstani grain to the Iranian and Transcaucasian countries, since Kazakhstan has grain terminals not only in the port of Aktau, but also in the port of Baku.