The Egyptian government has agreed to buy half a million tonnes of wheat from India, Egyptian Supply Minister Ali Mosellehi told Reuters on Sunday.
Egypt, one of the world’s largest wheat importers, is looking for alternatives to grain exports to the Black Sea that have been hampered by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, both major wheat exporters.
“We have agreed to buy half a million tonnes from India,” Moselhi told a news conference.
New Delhi on Saturday announced a ban on wheat exports amid a scorching heat wave that has reduced domestic production and driven domestic prices.
However, at the press conference, Moselhi said that Indian sanctions would not apply to the agreement with Egypt.
He added that the Egyptian cabinet had given approval to the General Authority for Supply Commodities to disrupt the government buyer’s tender process and purchase wheat directly from the country or company.
Egypt is also in talks with Kazakhstan, France and Argentina, he said.
Egypt has four months of strategic reserves and six months of vegetable oil, the country’s prime minister said earlier in the day.
Officials say that after the ongoing local harvest, Egyptian wheat stocks will be sufficient by the end of the year.