Buenos Aires, August 6th. With the acquisition of Noble Agri and Nidera, Chinese COFCO is heading the grain exports from Argentina. According to the Ministry of AgIndustry registers, during 2017 COFCO shipped 8.20 millions metric tons of grains, or 17.1% of total Argentine grains exports, that totalized 47.88 MMT. The second place was occupied by US flagship grain merchant Cargill, with 7.31 MMT or 15.3% of national exports. Archer Daniels Midland, Bunge and Louis Dreyfus Commodities (LDC) totalized 14.55 MMT or other 30%. These are the five top grain merchants in the country, running 63% of the grains foreign trade.

What is exporting COFCO? From its total shipping, 49% was corn, 32% wheat, and 14% soybean. The company also shipped little amounts of soybean from Paraguay and barley from Argentina.

But in the first five months of 2018, trends seem to replicate. Again, COFCO heads the ranking with 3.62 MMT or 17.8% of the national shipments (20.30 MMT) followed by ADM with 3.3 MMT (16.2%) and Cargill with 2.7 MMT (13.3%). Due to stationarity of the crop season, 53% of the COFCO’s shipment during 2017 corresponds to wheat, and the other 42% to corn.

Prior to COFCO took the control over Noble and Nidera, both companies held 16% of the Argentine grain exports or 5.8 MMT. In 2016, official registers incorporate the Chinese trader and joint with Noble and Nidera hold 14% of exports or 6.7 MMT.

But in the byproducts local market, COFCO doesn’t exhibit the same stronghold than in the grain field. In the first five months of 2018, the tandem COFCO-Nidera held only the 5.2% of the total national soybean meal exports and 7.2% of soybean oil. The company is surpassed by Argentine firms like Aceitera General Deheza (AGD) or global traders as Cargill. In 2017, for example, COFCO held only de 4.4% of soybean oil exports and the 7.7% of soybean meal exports.