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Ahram Online: Egypt local wheat harvest ends with sharply lower figure

Egypt had said previously it was looking to purchase 3.5 to 4 million tonnes of local wheat.
28.06.18 | Interesting article at Ahram Online

Egypt announced the end of its wheat harvest on Wednesday with a total of 3.15 million tonnes of the grain procured from local farmers, Supply Minister Ali Moselhy said in a statement, one of the lowest tallies in years for the world’s largest importer.
Egypt had said previously it was looking to purchase 3.5 to 4 million tonnes of local wheat, a critical staple it uses to supply a sprawling bread subsidy programme relied on by tens of millions of Egyptians.

Last year Egypt procured about 3.6 million tonnes of wheat from farmers, the first year it scrapped a subsidy and began tying its local purchase price to the global price for grains.

The new system was designed to curb smuggling as some local traders had in the past used the price gap to sell cheaper imported wheat to the government as local wheat for a profit.

This year however, traders said some of the local crop had been bought out by private sector mills which offered higher prices than the government for the grain with global prices rising above the government price during harvest time.