MOSCOW, RUSSIA — Russian state-controlled bank VTB on Aug. 15 said it had completed its purchase of a 70% stake in Russian grain trader Mirogroup, according to Reuters.

The purchase is the latest move in VTB’s effort to become a bigger player in the country’s grain export business.

Yuri Solviev, first deputy chief executive at VTB, said the bank wants to create a vertically integrated organization in the grain market.

“The acquisition of Mirogroup is an important step in the implementation of VTB’s grain market strategy,” Solviev said. “By creating a trading and logistics infrastructure, the bank will be able to sell grain of good quality on global markets directly to end consumers.”

Earlier this year, VTB announced that is was considering buying a stake in Taman Port grain terminal and that it was buying a controlling interest in RTC Group, a Russian railway holding company that transports large amounts of grain.

It also has purchased the Novorossiysk Grain Terminal and shares in the Novorossiysk Kombinat Khleboproduktov terminal and United Grain Company.

Mirogroup has an extensive network of regional representative offices, long-term partnerships with agricultural producers and infrastructure enterprises, VTB said.

Mirogroup exported 2 million tonnes of grain from Russia in the previous marketing season, which ended June 30.

Russia is the world’s largest wheat exporter.