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Egypt assures Russia’s withdrawal from grain agreement will not have major impact on market

The First Assistant Minister to Supply and Internal Trade, Ibrahim Ashmawy, downplayed the impact of Russia’s withdrawal from a major grain agreement–  that allowed Ukraine to export grain across the Black Sea – will have on Egypt’s local market.

“In general, it is too early to judge this matter, because any disturbances that occur in the supply chains in a negative way will have an impact on prices, and there has been an increase already in wheat prices on global stock exchanges by 2.7 percent,” Ashmawy said.

During a telephone interview with Lamis al-Hadidi on Egypt’s “Last Word” (Kalema Akhera) television show, Ashmawy noted that many countries concluded agreements to import wheat away from Russia and Ukraine in anticipation of Russia’s exit from the grain freeze agreement.

Since the coronavirus pandemic, Egypt has absorbed the global changes that led to disruption of supply chains and even the Russia-Ukraine war, he noted, and has worked to increase the strategic stock of goods and increase absorptive capacities.

“Egypt currently has safe reserves of a number of strategic commodities, on top of which is wheat, and we have reserves that cover a period of six months,” Ashmawy said.

He explained that, “Egypt worked to diversify supply chains, totaling 22 origin points, after it was concentrated at the time of coronavirus in wheat markets from Russia and Ukraine by 80 percent, but now Egypt has a diversity of wheat sources.”

“We have learned the lesson that we have safe reserves and large storage capacities to accommodate these reserves,” Ashmawy said.

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