The General Authority for the Supply of Basic Products (GASC), Egypt’s state grain buyer, bought 815,000 tonnes of wheat, including 240,000 tonnes from Romania, in an auction, marking the largest single purchase in recent years.
The purchase included 350,000 tons of French wheat, 240,000 tons of Romanian wheat, 175,000 tons of Russian wheat and 50,000 tons of Bulgarian wheat, GASC said, quoted by nasdaq.com. The quantity will be delivered in August, September and October 2022.
The lowest cost and freight bid was for Romanian wheat at $429.90 a tonne, traders said, down 10% from the lowest bid purchased at the last GASC auction in June, but still an increase of 58% compared to a purchase from Romania made around the same period last year.
The purchase comes days after Egypt’s supply minister said the government was looking at ways to reduce imports by increasing the extraction percentage for flour used in subsidized bread to 87.5% from 82% and even using potatoes in bread making .
The lowest cost and transport offer was for Romanian wheat
Egypt aims to save about 500,000 tonnes of imported wheat, targeting 5-5.5 million tonnes of imported wheat for the 2022/23 fiscal year. Earlier on Wednesday, the World Bank said it had agreed to give Egypt $500 million to help finance wheat purchases.
Egypt relies mainly on imported wheat to provide heavily subsidized bread to more than 70 million of its 103 million people. The tender also included Russian shipments from the port of Kavkaz, after the state buyer made changes to its specifications to allow all Russian ports to participate, Mediafax writes.
Traders have previously said the Kavkaz approval could mean more competitive shipping deals. The buyer also allowed cargoes of 50,000 tons instead of the usual 55,000 and 60,000 tons.