UPDATE 2-Argentina considers reinstating exchange rate for soybean sector -source
(Adds comments from a source and rural leader)
BUENOS AIRES, Nov 18 (Reuters) - Argentina is considering reinstating a special exchange rate for soybean producers in a bid to boost exports, a government source with knowledge of the plan told Reuters on Friday, as the country needs grains export dollars to replenish its reserves.
"It is under analysis," the source said when asked about the possibility of providing a differentiated exchange rate for the sector, but declined to give an estimate of what it would be.
A spokesman for the economy ministry declined to comment when asked by Reuters about the plan.
"There were consultations (from the government) on stock estimates and possible sale rates" for soybeans, said the source, who works in the agro-export sector, adding that talks did not go beyond those topics.
"I've heard the rumors, but not from the government," said Carlos Achetoni, president of the Argentine Agrarian Federation (FAA), one of the country's main agricultural associations.
Argentine farmers have sold 72.2% of the 44 million tonnes of soybeans produced in the 2021/22 harvest, data from the agriculture secretariat showed this week, down from last year's rate of 74.2% during the same period.
A government-spurred soybean export push in September helped bring in some $8.16 billion in hard currency reserves for the country, according to Economy Minister Sergio Massa.
The reserves are sorely needed to make future payments to the International Monetary Fund and private creditors, buffer the peso currency and allow importers to buy supplies.
Argentina's central bank reserves stand at $37.616 billion compared to $43.785 billion when President Alberto Fernandez took office at the end of 2019, the latest data available shows. (Reporting by Eliana Raszewski; Editing by Anthony Esposito, Alexander Smith and Sandra Maler)
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