November 23rd – Argentine Wheat and Barley

November 21st 2021

Argentine Wheat and Barley

In view of the ongoing developing situation and different communications and instructions being issued by Sanitary Authorities of the Argentine Government we have chosen to send a consolidated daily report at the closing of working hours with an update of the day’s news.

National Holiday: Wednesday, December 08th, 2021

Argentine Wheat and Barley: New figures and forecasts for the wheat and barley harvests (presently underway) were issued by the Ministry of Agriculture. Wheat is now forecast to be between 19.9 and 20 million tons. Of these between 12.5 and 13 million tons are expected to go for export. The barley harvest is now forecast to be in the order of 4.2 million tons.

GMO Crops: It is interesting to note that despite the much maligned Genetically Modified varieties of grains it has been announced that China will allow the sowing of some of these varieties of corn. On the local scene there is still a strong controversy regarding a local development by Bioceres (Argentine seed producer) of a variety of drought resistant wheat. This variety of wheat was sown on a wider range during the last season but strong resistance from the Brazilian buyers (ABITRIGO) has forced the parcels of this variety to be segregated so as not to mix with “traditional” wheat. It is reported that the Grain Majors (ABCD’s) are testing all shipments of wheat arriving at their terminals so as to ensure that there is no “contamination” during the process of storage and shipping at the ports/terminals. At the moment of writing the main restriction had been placed by Brazilian importers and so far no other receivers parties/countries have placed restrictions for the time being.

Tugboat services in Bahia Blanca and Necochea: Unrest at both these ports continues. As from Tuesday November 23rd towage services at Necochea and Bahia Blanca will be provided between 0700 and 1900 hours during all days. This limitation is related to wage and overtime dispute between Tugboat Owners and Unions.

Crew changes in Argentina/Plate: The Argentine Government, both the Immigration Department and the Sanitary Border Control Authority have specified that crew changes are now permitted under the following terms: Boarding crew members must have the following Covid-19 related tests performed in order to enter the country and board vessels:
*Full vaccination performed at lest 14 days prior entry to Argentina
*Negative PCR test performed 72 hours prior first boarding
*Antigen test performed upon arrival at “safe entry corridor” point (for example Buenos Aires Airport Ezeiza)
If, in case the boarding crew member does not have full vaccination (minimum 2 doses) before boarding then the person must be kept in quarantine for 7 days and may only leave this quarantine once a negative PCR test is performed.

Departing crew members will have to conform to the same requirements as boarding crew.
i.e. Full vaccination or else the 7 days quarantine plus the negative PCR test prior authorization to leave.
What remains for the moment is for the Sanitary Authorities at each port to designate the “safe corridors” for crew members to access and depart from vessels.
In the meantime the Sanitary Authority are concentrating designating airports so as to stimulate tourism.
As ports are designated we will advise.

Crew changes made at foreign port/s 14 days prior arrival at Argentine ports: Besides many other documents and certificates, these below are of special concern:

-Owner’s Crew changes protocol at foreign countries].

-Owner’s note (with signature and stamp of the Captain and Owners company) clarifying that the crew change was carried out taking all due precautions, etc.

-Medical certificate issued by certified professional in the country where the crew joined, not the country of origin.

-Covid test, PCR, for on-signers at port of boarding (not country of origin).

Lacking any of above (besides all usual documents) pilots will not be allowed to board until a 14 day period is counted starting from the moment the last crew-member has boarded.

Will keep you posted.

Best regards,

Antares Servicios Maritimos S.A.

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