Government rattled by Russia’s potential fertilizer export suspension

farmers fertilizer exports russia
Warehouse at a fertilizer plant. Photo: Srinuan Hiranwat/Shutterstock

Russian state news agency TASS reported that the country’s Industry and Trade Ministry has recommended suspending the export of fertilizers until normal transportation services to and from Russia are re-established. Major container ship operators such as A.P. Moller-Maersk A/S and Mediterranean Shipping Co. have interrupted services to Russian ports.

“A situation is emerging where, due to the sabotage of deliveries by a number of foreign logistics companies, farmers in Europe and other countries cannot receive the contracted volumes of fertilizers,” TASS reported.

The suspension would all but bury a deal sowed by President Jair Bolsonaro during his Moscow trip just two weeks ago, to increase the country’s access to Russian fertilizers.  

According to government data, Brazil imports over 96 percent of the potassium chlorate it uses as fertilizer. The Mines and Energy Ministry claims to have found new reserves in the Amazon Basin increasing Brazil’s production potential by 70 percent. 

This week, President Jair Bolsonaro and his congressional allies have moved to fast-track a bill that would allow for mining in indigenous lands.