Simon Evenett, Marc Muendler
Food insecurity was top-of-mind throughout 2022 as the fallout from the conflict in Ukraine on crop production and shipments materialised. Diplomacy helped, but with no end in sight to the conflict, this column uses forecasts for wheat harvests during the 2022/23 season to present evidence on the extent of Russia’s leverage of the world wheat market and its incentives to weaponise wheat. A larger harvest next year strengthens Russia’s leverage over world wheat markets. The country’s influence on world wheat prices will be greater if it hikes export taxes as compared to refusing to extend the Black Sea Grain Initiative.