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Ukraine spring grain sowing 91 percent complete

KIEV, May 17 (Reuters) - Ukrainian farmers had sown 6.7 million hectares of spring grains, equating to 91 percent of the total area, by Thursday, the country's Agriculture Ministry said.

Farmers have sown about 1.5 million hectares of spring barley, 414,000 hectares of peas, 186,000 hectares of oats, 165,000 hectares of spring wheat and 4.3 million hectares of maize, the ministry said in a statement.

Farmers plan to sow 7.4 million hectares of spring grains this year, including about 4.6 million hectares of maize.

Ukraine, the world's third-largest grain exporter, said the area covered by spring and winter grains would exceed 14 million hectares this year.

The ministry also said that farmers had sown 5.3 million hectares of sunflower, 96 percent of the expected area of 5.56 million hectares.

They sowed 280,000 hectares of sugar beet, 94 percent of the expected 299,000 hectares.

About 7.3 million hectares of spring grains were sown last year and the country's 2017 grains harvest totalled 61.3 million tonnes. (Reporting by Pavel Polityuk Editing by David Goodman)

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