Kazakhstan hopes for better wheat harvest in 2013

Kazakhstan expects favorable weather and good planting conditions to improve its grain output in 2013, the agriculture ministry said this week.
The country – one of the world’s largest grain exporters – experienced a significant downturn in 2012 due to extreme weather and fires which decimated thousands of acres.
Though no specific estimates for 2013 were provided by Agriculture Minister Asylzhan Mamytbekov in a press conference this week, he feels optimistic about this year’s harvest.
“The volume of moisture in the soil this spring allows us to hope for good sprouting,” the Reuters news agency reported Mamytbekov as saying.
“In some areas, this level of spring moisture will be enough even for bushing out. But in the final account, everything will depend on rains in the summer.”
Kazakh farmers will begin sowing after May 20. In total, 39.2 million acres will be sown, while 32.3 acres will be sown for wheat crops exclusively.
The area available for sowing is two percent less than it was in 2012, the ministry said.