Egypt gathers 2.7m tonnes of wheat
Cairo, May 23, 2013
Egypt, the world's largest wheat importer, has gathered 2.7 million tonnes of wheat from local farmers so far this season, Supplies Minister Bassem Ouda said in a television interview on Thursday.
"We have reached today 2.7 million tonnes of wheat," Ouda said on state television. "This is really the start of a good success that we hope to keep going."
Ouda added he expects a harvest of between 9 million and 9.5 million tonnes of domestic wheat during this season, which runs from April until early June. About half of the harvest ends up in government flour mills, with the rest being sold for feed and other purposes.
President Mohamed Mursi said last week he wants to stop importing wheat within four years and rely on Egypt's growing local production.
Egypt, which consumes around 15 million tonnes of wheat annually, usually imports around 10 million tonnes, but this year says it will buy only around 4 million to 5 million tonnes from abroad as it hopes to get the rest from local production. - Reuters