MOSCOW, Russia – Russia is seeking to expand its agricultural exports, seeking to feed the entire planet, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said. His statement comes as the country enjoys a record increase in grain exports.
“Our country is, as they say, destined for the heavens to feed the entire planet, and we will try to do that,” Medvedev told reporters at Russian TV channels in a major interview on Thursday.
Besides being the “destination” of the country, food makes “nice export goods,” added the Russian prime minister.
Russia’s agriculture has expanded greatly in recent years, making it a solid and profitable industry, unlike what it was a few decades ago.
“In the 1990s, agriculture was called a ‘black hole’, where we should not invest, we were told not to feed, since we can buy everything somewhere else,” Medvedev said.
“This is now feeding our entire country. We have achieved the main objectives in relation to food safety and we are exporting grains and other products to the world market,” he added.
This year, Russia had a strong growth in its agricultural exports, making it the world’s largest wheat exporter.
From January to September 2018, Russia’s wheat and mescal flour exports increased by 54.3% compared to the previous year.
The amount of food that the county’s imports, in turn, continued to shrink. Imports of grain into Russia fell by 11.1% over the same period. Imports of barley fell sharply, falling 94%.
Meanwhile, Russia will continue to increase transactions in national currencies, taking into account the fact that the US is doing everything to undermine confidence in the dollar, according to Medvedev.
“It is more profitable for us to pay in rubles, it is more advantageous to establish relations with other countries in rubles: to make payments with China in rubles and yuan, we are always talking about it with them, with India – in rupees and rubles, respectively, with other countries – in national currencies and rubles,” Medvedev said.
According to the Russian prime minister, it is normal for Russia to continue on this course, there is nothing wrong with that. “More so than our colleagues across the ocean. I speak of the US authorities who do everything to undermine the confidence in the dollar,” Medvedev said.