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Published August 10, 2010, 02:11 PM

Russia lowers wheat harvest to 60 million tons

MOSCOW — Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin says this year’s wheat harvest will be off more than a third, down to 60 million tons.

MOSCOW — Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin says this year’s wheat harvest will be off more than a third, down to 60 million tons.

Last year, the world’s third largest grain exporter harvested 97 million tons of wheat and exported 21.4 million tons.

Itar Tass news agency quoted Putin as saying Monday that his government will not lift its ban on wheat exports until the end of the year. The ban announced Thursday has already pushed world wheat prices up.

Russian farmers already have little incentive to export as grain prices have been rising even faster in Russia than on world markets.

The forecast follows damage from a severe drought and wildfires.

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