File Photo: PAREA dry cargo ship in Europoort, Netherlands . Photo courtesy of Vessel finder website.
Russia remained Egypt’s main wheat exporter during the second half of 2022, the Russian Embassy in Cairo said earlier this month, adding that Egypt is the second biggest importer of Russian wheat.
Russia exported 5.9 million tons of grain throughout the second half of 2022, according to the Russian Grain Union.
From 1 to 8 January, Russia exported more than 191,000 tons of grain to Egypt, compared to 103,000 throughout January 2021, the union said.
“This indicates enhancement of bilateral cooperation in this field,” the embassy said.
Egypt, the world’s largest wheat importer, has continued to import wheat from Russia and Ukraine, which provided 80 per cent of Egypt’s wheat before the war between the two countries broke out in February last year.
However, Ukrainian wheat exports to Egypt decreased by 71 per cent in 2022 to 918,000 tons, Asharq Business reported, citing the head of Central Administration of Plant Quarantine at the Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation, Ahmed El-Attar, as saying last week.
Russian wheat exports to Egypt dropped by 1 per cent in 2022 to 5.4 million tons, he added.
Egypt, which consumes up to 18 million tons of wheat and imports around 12 million tons annually, has worked to encourage farmers to supply more wheat to the government amid the disruption in global food supply chains and the rise in commodity prices.
In mid-January, Egypt raised the price of local wheat procurement for the new harvest season, which starts in April 2023, by 42 per cent to hit EGP 1,250 per ardeb (1 ardeb= 150kg), up from EGP 880.