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Egypt set to buy 500,000 tonnes of wheat from India

May 16, 2022 at 10:43 am

Farmers harvest wheat in Egypt on 14 May 2022 [Mohamed Abdel Hamid/Anadolu Agency]

Egypt is set to buy 500,000 tonnes of wheat from India, the government has told Reuters.

On Saturday India announced it was banning wheat exports as a heatwave hit crops and the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues.

Egypt, along with other countries that need wheat for their food security needs, were exempt from the ban.

India’s export ban could push prices even higher and has been condemned by G7 industrialised nations who fear it will worsen the crisis.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has led to a rise in food prices as Ukraine is the world’s biggest exporter of sunflower oil and a major producer of maize and wheat.

Eighty per cent of Egypt’s wheat imports are from Russia and Ukraine, which has compounded soaring prices in a country which has already lived for year through austerity measures.

READ: Egypt says government purchases exempted from India’s wheat exports ban

In March the Egyptian pound fell 17 per cent in value against the US dollar after the Central Bank.

That same month the government turned to the IMF for the third time in six years to apply for a loan.

The Civil Unrest Index Projections recently said that rising food prices are set to stoke civil unrest in developing middle income countries, with Egypt among the countries set to be most at risk.

On 9 May the Egyptian government released three young Egyptian social media influencers who were imprisoned for “spreading false news” after they broadcast a video mocking the recent price rises.

At the time their video was published Egypt’s CAMPAS said that the country’s annual consumer price inflation was 12.1 per cent compared to 2.4 per cent in March last year, whilst the cost of vegetables, oils and grains rose by 23 per cent.