Strategic wheat reserves enough to last until mid-January 2017: supplies minister

Egypt, the world's biggest buyer of wheat, has enough strategic reserves of the commodity to last until mid-January 2017, Supply Minister Khaled Hanafi said on Tuesday.

Egypt said, this month, it received 5 million tonnes of wheat from local farmers since the start of its harvest season on April 15, more than its target of 4 million tonnes.

The government ended its local wheat buying on June 15, earlier than usual, due to exceeding its target of 4 million tons, according to the Supplies Ministry.

Egypt's wheat harvest begins in April and normally runs through July.

Last year, the government said it bought a record 5.3 million tons of the grain, up from 3.7 million the year before.

The ministry says it had spent LE14.5 billion (US$1.6 billion) this year as part of a subsidy for farmers, who are being paid a fixed price of LE420 ($47.30) per ardeb (150 kg) of wheat after Egypt abandoned plans to pay farmers global market rates this year.

The higher fixed price, well above global rates, is meant to encourage farmers to grow wheat but has led to smuggling involving the sale of cheaper imported wheat to the government falsely labelled as Egyptian.

Related Articles

Back to top button