U.S.-Canada Quarterly Grain Trade Consultations, May 2002
U.S. and Canadian officials met on May 22, 2002, for grain trade consultations as provided for under the Record of Understanding and Action Plan agreed to between Canada and the United States. Since January 1999, the two sides meet quarterly to exchange information on grain market developments and prospects.
Officials reviewed the North American and global market situation, including bilateral grain trade flows and projections for the current year. Current items of interest were discussed including both Canadian and U.S. through-shipments of grain to other countries and/or states. A summarization of elements of the new U.S. Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 was provided and Canadian concerns were raised on certain aspects of the new Act.
Current projections for 2001-02 indicate that overall Canadian wheat exports will decline slightly reflecting the smaller drought-affected crop in Western Canada and reduced area seeded in Ontario. Exports of wheat to the U.S. will, however, rise as a result of smaller U.S. wheat supplies and stronger demand for durum. Canadian durum shipments to the U.S. are projected to increase in 2001-02 after two years of reduced shipments. Although the 2001-02 Canadian durum crop was down sharply, carryover stocks from 2000-01 are being blended with the very high protein 2001 durum harvest to ensure sufficient supplies. Exports of non-durum wheat from Western Canada to the U.S. will also rise marginally. Canadian malting barley exports, both overall and to the U.S., are projected to fall substantially in 2001-02, due to reduced production. U.S. corn exports to Canada are expected to exceed the record level of 2000-01. Feed grain demand in Western Canada will draw in large imports of U.S. corn as supplies of other feed grains are down significantly from the previous year. A decline in U.S. corn exports to Eastern Canada will be more than offset by the significantly higher exports to western provinces. (tables attached*).
The projections which were discussed are each participant's views of how markets are likely to evolve and are not commitments.
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* Canadian production and export projections were provided by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and U.S. production and export projections were provided by the USDA's Foreign Agricultural Service.