The General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) purchased 175,000 tons of wheat from Romania, Russia and the United States to produce subsidised bread, the Ministry of Supply and Domestic Trade announced. The purchased wheat will be supplied starting 11 April over a period of 10 days.
Around 60,000 tons were purchased from Romania and the same amounts from Russia. The remaining 55,000 were bought from the United States. The average price per ton was $312, bringing the total cost of imported wheat to $54.6m.
Minister of Supply Khaled Hanafy said that the strategic stock of wheat is within safe levels, and has previously announced that the stock should be sufficient till June.
Hanafy added that the ministry is currently studying each cycle of bread production to eliminate obstacles that create unnecessary costs.
The bread distribution system wastes between 20% and 25% of the state’s bread subsidies budget, some EGP 22bn.
Earlier this month, 295,000 tons of wheat was purchased from Romania and Russia. Around 60,000 tons will be imported from Romania with a cost of $292.54 per ton, while the remainder of 235,000 tons will be imported from Russia with an average price of $292.50 per ton.
In February, Minister of Agriculture Ayman Abu Hadid revealed that a new strategy for marketing wheat domestically had been developed by the Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation. The ministry cooperated with the Principal Bank for Development and Agricultural Credit (PBDAC) and agriculture cooperative associations to develop the new marketing strategy.
The PBDAC will grant loans to agriculture co-ops in order to help them purchase wheat before the end of the supply season. The co-ops will refund the granted amount after marketing and distributing the purchased quantities.