France prioritises exporting wheat to Egypt: Ambassador

Ahram Online , MENA , Tuesday 5 Jul 2022

France, which is a large producer and exporter of wheat, has made it a priority to ensure that Egypt gets the wheat it needs during the current harvest season, affirmed France’s Ambassador to Egypt Marc Baréty.

This picture taken on June 29, 2022, shows wheat in the field of the farmer Pascal Lemaitre where he grows an organic ancient wheat near Blesle. AFP


The move came in a bid to support Egypt in its efforts to confront the repercussions of the Russian-Ukrainian War, which resulted in food security problems around the world, he added in a meeting held with a host of journalists on the occasion of France’s National Day on 14 July.

Meanwhile, the ambassador said France has played a crucial role in allowing Egypt to obtain €100 million in support from the EU to counter the rising food prices earlier this year.

He added that the aid will be used in establishing more silos and increasing grain production.

Also, the World Bank’s (WB) Board of Executive Directors announced its approval on Wednesday of a $500-million-loan to back Egypt’s social protection net and food security in the face of the impacts of the war.

The loan will support Egypt’s national efforts to lower waste and loss in the wheat supply chain by upgrading and expanding climate-resilient wheat silos under the Emergency Food Security and Resilience Support Project, the WB said.

Egypt — one of the largest wheat importers in the world — used to get 80 percent of its imported wheat from Russia and Ukraine prior to the conflict, which started in February.

Thus, the country announced that it would be diversifying its import sources to include other countries — such as France, Bulgaria, Romania, and India — in order to ensure sufficient wheat supplies.

Furthermore, in June, Egypt received a new shipment of 63,000 tonnes of wheat from France. The country will also import an additional 180,000 tonnes of wheat from India within a few days, said Minister of Supply and Internal Trade Aly Moselhi late last month.

Moreover, Egypt’s General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) — the country’s grain buyer — announced on Thursday that it has secured 815,000 tonnes from a bid in which four counties — France, Romania, Russia, and Bulgaria — participated as part of the country’s plan to diversify its sources of wheat on the heels of the war.

In June, the GASC also announced the signing of a contract to purchase 465,000 tonnes of wheat from Russia, Bulgaria, and Romania in what is reportedly the country’s largest wheat purchase since the start of the current crisis.

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