KIEV, UKRAINE — Sunflower and rapeseed planted area is forecast to increase in Ukraine in 2018-19, while soybean plantings likely will shrink due to recent changes in the domestic tax policy that will make soybeans less profitable for farmers, according to a May 16 Global Agricultural Information Network (GAIN) report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The USDA said the change in tax policy will give soybean crushers an advantage for processing versus exporting unprocessed soybeans, which will result in more exports of soybean and soybean meal.

Soybean planted area for the coming crop year is forecast at around 1.5 million hectares, a 23% decline from 2017-18, while production is projected to fall by 14% to 3.3 million tonnes, despite higher expected yields than the five-year average, the report said.

Conversely, sunflower seed and rapeseed output in Ukraine are expected to rise sharply. The USDA forecasts sunflower seed production in 2018-19 at 15.6 million tonnes, a 16% increase over the previous year.

Rapeseed planted area is forecast to increase by 25% while production is projected to rise by 21% to 2.6 million tonnes.