For months now, since the conflict in Ukraine began and the Russian advance has been inexorable, the question arises as to who can emerge victorious from this European confrontation?
Russia has demonstrated the limits of its "classic" military power while imposing its law on the raw materials markets where its pivotal role in the balance between East and West weighs heavily.
America claimed that it was no longer the "global policeman" after its withdrawal from Afghanistan. But the United States is suffering the full force of the economic crisis with galloping inflation (1% for the month of May) which does not augur well for the months and years to come.
As for Europe, the limits of its economic and military powerlessness are becoming apparent, although its capacity to react remains concerted.
China, for its part, remains bogged down in its "Zero Covid" policy, which is having a negative impact on its growth. To assert its leadership, it cannot take advantage of the war in Europe either, as the slowdown of its own economy will be slowed down by the recession in the West.
So, there are only losers, first and foremost Ukraine, whose population has been decimated and whose country is in ruins, crushed by bombs.
We are left to speculate on how to export the tens of millions of tons of grain at risk in the region's silos. Turkey has tried to mediate to allow the ports of Odessa and Kherson to function. But the most notable interventions were those of President Macky Sall, who came to Russia to plead the cause of the most fragile countries in order to cover their food needs, and that of the UN Secretary General, who is trying to change the sanctions against Russia in order to stabilize the situation of the most dependent countries.
In this respect, the situation of fertilizers is interesting because transactions are taking place despite the sanctions initiated by companies, particularly American ones. However, as for all products, there is a great risk that an easing of the situation will cause a collapse in prices, revealing a situation that is much less tense than it seems. For example, urea has lost half of its value in a few weeks
This may explain the caution of the latest World Cotton Supply and Demand (WASDE) report. For the time being, production and consumption are in balance, creating a non-event, whereas climatic hazards, higher production costs, the reduction in planted areas and the reduction in demand against the backdrop of the economic crisis are creating an environment that is explosive to say the least.
It will also be necessary to monitor the hyper-financialization of markets that have become very volatile.
The cotton market is totally intertwined with the world economy, which leads us to decipher the global economic environment rather than the ups and downs of the market.
Inflation is forcing all central banks to intervene and pushing the dollar ever higher while other currencies are losing their safe haven status such as the yen which is hitting its lowest point against the greenback.
The WTO meeting which opened this weekend will have a lot of work to do to convince once again that a happy globalization is possible.Πηγή: Mambo Commodities