Russia-Ukraine war: Govt in talks with Egypt to start wheat shipments

India is in final talks to begin wheat exports to Egypt, the biggest importer, while negotiations are also going on with countries such as China and Turkey, after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine upended global supplies.

The country is in discussions to sell wheat to Bosnia, Sudan, Nigeria and Iran too, the commerce ministry said in a statement at the weekend. India is the world’s second-largest producer, while Bangladesh was the largest buyer of the nation’s wheat in 2020-21, it said.

The government has given assurances to make sufficient railway capacity available to meet any immediate surge in demand for wheat exports, while port authorities have been asked to increase the number of terminals and containers dedicated to wheat, according to the ministry.

Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority, an arm of the commerce ministry, held a meeting of stakeholders last week on how to increase shipments. India’s wheat exports climbed more than fourfold to about 6 million tons in the 10 months ended Jan. 31, from 1.38 million tons a year earlier, according to the authority.

Wheat output will likely rise to a record 111.3 million tons in 2021-22, from 109.6 million tons a year earlier, farm ministry data show.

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