I wrote – Sherine Salah:
Global grain prices of wheat and corn have risen during the past months as a result of higher prices on global stock exchanges, according to data from Bloomberg Agency.
However, rice prices were not affected in Egypt, as the locally grown crop is relied upon. Stock exchanges do not control the local price with Egypt stopping importing from abroad.
Egypt imports a large proportion of wheat and corn to meet its global needs.
Ali Moselhi, Minister of Supply and Internal Trade, said that Egypt is the largest importer in the world with about 10 million tons annually in the field of supply (the Ministry of Supply imports 6 million tons and the private sector 4 million tons), and it seeks to diversify its sources of imports to enhance its strategic stock.
According to Bloomberg data, corn prices have risen 50 percent so far this year due to the commodity’s stockpiling, reaching their highest level since 2012.
The agency said Chicago wheat futures surged more than 20% last year due to severe weather that hit crops from North America to Russia, raising concerns about a shortage.
According to the agency, Egypt is the largest importer of wheat in the world, as it imports from many countries of the world such as Russia, Australia, Poland, France, America, Romania, Ukraine and Belarus.
What is happening in Egypt?
The prices of imported wheat in Egypt increased by about 200 pounds during the last period, due to the global rise in the price, according to Hisham Abu Dahab, a member of the Grain Division of the Giza Chamber of Commerce, to Masrawy.
This is what I agreed with Hussein Boodai, a member of the Chamber of Grain Industry in the Federation of Industries, saying that wheat prices rose during the past months as a result of the rise in international stock exchanges.
According to Abu al-Dahab, the prices of imported wheat rose to range between 5350 and 5400 pounds per ton, compared to 5100 and 5200 pounds, before the increase.
Traders in the Chamber of Grain Industry said that it is difficult to expect future increases in wheat prices, noting that the international stock exchange controls prices, hoping that there will be no new rise in wheat.
Traders pointed out that the rise in wheat prices affects the increase in other commodities, such as free flour, which is included in many ingredients.
A member of the Chamber of Grain Industry said that the price of a ton of flour rose to about 350 pounds, to record the price of a ton of 7,000 pounds, compared to 6,400 and 6,600 pounds before the increase.
Despite the rise in prices, Egypt has a stockpile of wheat that suffices the needs of the next five months, according to statements by the Minister of Supply and Internal Trade.
The price of a ton of yellow corn increased to 5,000 pounds, compared to 4,500 pounds before the increase, according to Hussein Abu Saddam, head of the Farmers Syndicate.
Egypt imports 50% of its maize needs from abroad.
Abu Saddam stated that he could not expect a rise in corn prices during the coming period, as pricing in Egypt is linked to the price on the international stock exchange.
Contrary to what happened in the rise in the price of both wheat and corn, the same rise in the price of rice did not occur, as it is relied on what is grown locally, in addition to the government preventing imports from abroad.
The government stopped importing rice two years ago, in order to maintain local production.
Ragab Shehata, head of the rice division of the Chamber of Grain Industry in the Federation of Industries, said that Egypt has enough rice stocks for its needs until August next year.
According to Shehata, the price of a ton of rice ranges between 3900 and 7500 pounds, depending on the type.