soybean field

USSEC Holds Regional Workshop on GAFTA/FOSFA Contracts & Arbitration in Agricultural Commodity Trading in Jordan


USSEC – Middle East North Africa (MENA) organized a regional workshop focusing on Grain and Feed Trade Association (GAFTA) / Federation of Oils, Seeds and Fats Associations, Ltd. (FOSFA) Contracts & Arbitration in Agricultural Commodity Trading from January 15 -17 at the Kempinski Hotel Ishtar, Dead Sea, Jordan.
The activity began with a two-day seminar in Jordan, followed by one-on-one meetings in Saudi Arabia and Morocco.
The conference was attended by more than 65 participants from 11 different countries: Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and Jordan. Participants hailed from major crushers and vegetable oil refineries and represented traders, poultry producers, feed millers, and poultry integrators.
Speakers at the conference included Wayne Bacon, President of Hammersmith; Bob Bresnahan, President of Trilateral, Inc.; and Jay O’Neil, Senior Agricultural Economist, International Grains Program at Kansas State University.
Lectures included: Contracts; The Arbitration Process and What You Need to Know & Do; Buying Raw Materials (Soybeans, Soybean Meal and Soybean oil) in a Down Commodity Cycle; Marine Insurance; Laytime and Demurrage; World Ocean Freight; Global Bulk & Container Shipping Outlook; Vessel Demand and Availability; and What Will The Next Two Years Hold?
With purchase contracts a major factor for the attendees, Mr. Bacon kicked off the workshop by covering the details and risks of GAFTA grain and FOSFA oilseed contracts. The presentation was very well received with many questions from the floor. Dr. O’Neil, who spoke about the problems that can occur, expanded on the first presentation and the use of the arbitration procedures offered by GAFTA and FOSFA, again answering many participant questions.
The day’s proceedings closed with Mr. Bresnahan’s presentation, “Buying Raw Materials in a Down Commodity Cycle.” Mr. Bresnahan showed the attendees the broad dynamics of regional and world market from the supply and demand side.
“The USSEC regional workshop at the Kempinski was an exceptional event with attendance by major users of soybeans and their products from 11 countries in the MENA region,” said Mr. Bacon.
“If one thing can be said about the workshop, it would be a comment on the very high level of participation by the audience, who asked very detailed questions and commented on each speaker,” USSEC Regional Commercial, Technical & Marketing Director – MENA Mousa Wakileh stated. “It seems that the presentations were exactly what was wanted.”
"I’ve been involved in USSEC customer events around the world for many years and I’ve always been impressed with the high caliber of the overseas staff and the truly beneficial relationships they have with our global soy buyers,” said Dr. O’Neil. “And the current contract and risk management workshop conducted in Amman, Jordan is a glowing example of such. The program quality and customer interaction encountered at this event is testament to the value of USSEC overseas staff and the programs they conduct.”
“North Africa is a very competitive market, yet we find loyal buyers who are eager to engage with USSEC representatives and to learn more about how to contract and ship U.S. Soy in the most competitive way,” he continued.
“The most common customer concern here has been that of quality, particularly as it relates to perceived differences in quality between origin and destination. From what I’m hearing, it appears these buyers need to gain a better understanding of how to apply the USDA grade standards to their specific needs and how the vessel load plan affects quality variability within each vessel shipment. A well-informed buyer is always a good and appreciative one,” concluded Dr. O’Neil.