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Egypt's commodity authority to receive $58.1 million for wheat imports

General Authority for Supply Commodities to receive $58.1 million to import 180,000 tonnes of wheat

Ahram Online, Monday 23 Dec 2013
A farmer harvests wheat on a field in the El-Menoufia governorate, about 99 km (62 miles) north of Cairo in this April 23, 2013 (Photo: Reuters)

Egypt's General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) is to receive LE402 million ($58.1 million) from the finance ministry to import 180,000 tonnes of wheat, the ministry said on Sunday.

This raises the amount of funds allocated to the authority to LE12.4 billion ($1.79 billion) in the first half of the current financial year.

The resources were used in importing more than 2.5 million tonnes of wheat and 494,000 tonnes of table oils, the purchase of 135,000 tonnes of local oils as well as paying the dues of farmers and exporters amounting to LE300 million ($43.37 million).

“GASC currently consumes nine million tonnes [of wheat] annually to provide subsidized bread, of which 3.6 million tonnes are supplied by local farmers while the remaining 5.4 million tonnes are imported,” supply ministry spokesperson Mahmoud Diab told Ahram Online last month.

Diab pointed out that local farmers produce up to 8.5 million tonnes of wheat annually, roughly five million of which are sold to the private sector.

Self sufficiency in wheat for subsidised bread can be achieved by 2019 if Egypt raises its silo storage capacity by one million tonnes annually, the Egyptian agriculture minister told Reuters last month.

Sugar subsidies cost the finance ministry LE5.83 billion ($840 million) in the financial year 2012/2013 which have all been paid, added the statement.

The ministry also approved payment of LE300 million ($43.37 million) in dues to the Egyptian Sugar and Integrated Industries Company for the current financial year, thus raising the amount of money paid to the company during the current financial year to LE900 million ($130.11 million).

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