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Egypt, the world’s largest importer of Ukraine and Russia in the latest meeting approved India as one of its suppliers, Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal revealed. Egypt is most probably to lift about one million tonnes of wheat from India and approximately 240,000 tonnes will be shipped in April itself.
Even the sources said that export got approval after a process of field visits and after analyzing quarantine facilities in India by Egyptian authorities following complaints of Indian wheat-containing 'karnal bunt' disease.
The Egyptian authorities visited wheat fields in Madhya Pradesh, UP, and Punjab to check the quality of wheat produced in India. India aims to export 10-11 million tonnes of wheat in FY-23 due to the surge in global demand due to the Russia-Ukraine crisis.
Egypt imported wheat about USD 1.8 billion from Russia and USD 610.8 million from Ukraine in 2020.
“ Egypt approves India as a wheat supplier and govt. steps in as the world look for reliable alternate sources for a steady food supply. Our farmers have ensured our granaries overflow and we are ready to serve the world,” Piyush Goyal said in a tweet.
Later on, there was a press conference in which Piyush Goyal said that Egypt has allowed the imports but after the personal intervention of top officials and India wants to become a regular supplier of good quality wheat to the African nation.
Also, he said, “We are aiming to achieve a wheat export target of at least 10 million tonnes in Fy-23 that can even rise to 15 million tonnes if conditions remain favorable.”
India's wheat exports rose to $1.74 billion in April-January 2021-22 as against $340.17 million in the same period last year.
India exports wheat mainly to neighboring countries with Bangladesh having the largest share. Also now it has entered new wheat markets such as Yemen, Afghanistan, Qatar, and Indonesia. Amid the war now India is aiming to replace Russia and Ukraine in 30-odd wheat importing countries across the globe, senior government officials said.
India is the second-largest producer of wheat with a share of around 14.14 percent of the world's total production in 2020. India produces around 107.59 million tonnes of wheat annually while a major chunk of it goes towards domestic consumption which is around 98 million tonnes.
Therefore, around 10-12 million tonnes in surplus is used for exports. Major wheat-growing states in India are Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Bihar, and Gujarat.
Due to the crisis, the Indian wheat price had a rise up to around $360 per tonne (FOB) and then came down a bit to around $330-$340 per tonne (FOB) in the last few days.
Due to the crisis of Russia-Ukraine India got the preference for wheat export and currently, Indian wheat price is least in comparison to other countries in the world.
Till April 11, 2022, wheat procurement was almost 30 percent less than last year. But, it is expected to rise in the coming days. However, it is estimated that the expected procurement will be around 30-32 million tonnes, much less than the targeted 44.4 million tonnes.