MOSCOW--The Agrosalon Fair is the largest agriculture machinery trade show in Russia, and it was conducted this year Oct. 09 -12. It occupied about 70,000 sq.m; about 360 companies from 18 countries participated in the event. The fair takes place every two years and shows the trends in the Russian AG machinery market.

For more show pictures, click here.

The changes in the fair environment were clearly visible this year, compared to the fair conducted two years ago. This year, the fair was bigger, with more participants. Many exhibitors came from Germany and Italy, including industry leaders like Manitou, Amazone, Merlo, Horsch, and Dieci. Traditional show participants from Russia and Belarus, like Rostselmash, Kirovsky Plant, Minsk Tractor Plant, and Gomselmash showed extended product ranges. Rostselmash offered several combine models and HHP AG tractors, including crawler and combined wheel/crawler drives.

Claas showed machinery made in Russia (combines) and abroad (tractors and loaders). The number of foreign tractors at the fair also increased; we saw Weidermann, Berthold, Turkish Basak, and New Holland. The Chinese presence was limited this time, but we did see Lovol tractors, and the compact Chinese pavilion included a group of companies, offering filters, parts and components. Large harvesters were shown by Ropa and Siloking.

Also, at this fair, we saw an increased number of engine manufacturers and their representatives. After a long break, Cummins had a large booth, showing a full range of engines produced through its JV with KAMAZ in Chelny.

Other engine makers. including Volvo, MTU, YAMZ, and MMZ had large exhibits at the fair. TMZ engines were installed on partner's products of Bryanskselmash and Kirovets. According to the Cummins representative, the company has an interest in AG machinery in Russia now, because it expects significant growth in the segment.

Mobile sprayers were presented by Kuhn, Berthold, Apache, Jacto and Amazone. However, as it may be seen from the stand of local OEM Kazanselmash, this product is already made in Russia. It's important to note that several years ago mass production of this kind of machinery was absent in Russia.

One especially interesting product shown at the fair was the Aurora Agrobot. This is drone tractor is built on the chassis of standard tractor. A group of electronic antennas and sensors are installed in a module, which replaces the standard tractor cabin. The Agrobot computer communicates with a central server, which can control several dozen such drones at a time.

Traditionally, Russian agriculture machinery is strongly dependent on State support. With this support, Russian farmers and agricultural holdings preferred to buy the machinery listed as recommended by the government, because they are compensated for part of the machinery cost by the State.

In turn, the government recommends purchasing machinery produced in Russia. As a result, foreign AG OEMs have only two options: either localize machinery production (like Claas) or leave the market (like Cat Challenger).

Finally, only niche products with limited substitutes in Russia, like beetroot harvesters, have a good chance to be imported to Russia 

However, in 2018, the situation has changed: here have been delays in compensation payments to the farmers. This reduced the number of AG machines sold since the beginning of 2018. But this also became a factor in allowing end users to purchase foreign machinery, not included on the privilege list. This may explain why many foreign companies have resurrected their interest in the Russian AG machinery market.  PSR