Trade Minister: Egypt has enough wheat to avoid food crisis

The Egyptian government has enough stored wheat to avoid a bread shortage, said Minister of Industry and Trade Rachid Mohamed Rachid. Rachid added that rioting, similar to the 2008 wheat crisis, is unlikely to happen.

Funds are secure for the bread subsidy and therefore Egyptian consumers will not be impacted by the global price hikes, said Rachid.

In statements to Al-Masry Al-Youm, Rachid said that the General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) has provided adequate quantities of wheat to last Egyptians until next February.

He added that the GASC has found alternative sources to supply the 540,000 tons of wheat Egypt intended to import from Russia before a drought and resultant wildfires destroyed much of Russia's crops early last month.

Rachid said no one could have anticipated a ban of this magnitude–Russia is one of the largest wheat exporters in the world.

Rachid revealed that the Ministry of Agriculture is working on increasing local wheat production, adding however, that Egypt will continue to import 6 million tons of wheat every year over the coming few years.

Egypt consumes an estimated 14 million tons of wheat every year and depends on imports for half that figure.

Translated from the Arabic Edition.

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