CAIRO - Egypt, the world's largest wheat buyer, has enough strategic reserves of the grain to cover its consumption needs until February, the Supply Ministry said in a statement on Friday as wheat consumption is set to rise due to population growth
The state's grains buyer, the General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC), bought 405,000 tonnes of wheat at its last purchase tender on Oct. 16.
GASC said on Tuesday it was seeking an unspecified quantity of wheat for shipment Nov. 21-30.
The Middle East News Agency (MENA) reported on Wednesday that wheat production in Egypt rose by 1.6% year-on-year during fiscal year 2017/2018,
Egypt’s wheat output increased to 8.6 million tonnes in FY17/18, compared to 8.4 million a year earlier, thanks to the increased area of wheat production, data released by the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) showed.
A report released last month by the Global Agricultural Information Network from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) said that consumption of wheat in Egypt was forecast to increase in 2019-20 due to population growth.
The USDA said that Egypt’s wheat imports were projected to remain unchanged at 12.5 million tonnes.
The USDA forecasts wheat consumption in 2019-20 at 20.4 million tonnes, up from 20.1 million tonnes the previous year. It attributes the uptick to an increase in food, seed and industrial (FSI) use consumption.
“The rise in FSI wheat consumption is attributable to population growth of about 2.4% per annum,” the USDA said.
“Egypt, with a population of 99.4 million, is adding over 2 million people per year. It also is host to an estimated 5 million refugees from Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen and Sudan,” it added.