EGYPT – Egypt is expected to import 3.1 million metric tons (MMT) of soybeans in 2024-25, up by 14.8% due to an influx of foreign currency into its banks and an increase in feed demand, according to a report from the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) of the US Department of Agriculture.

Egypt is the largest importer of soybeans in the Middle East and North Africa, producing only an estimated 85,000 tonnes, or less than 3% of demand.

Domestic production of soybeans is mostly used in the production of full-fat soybeans in feed rations for lactating cows and broiler chickens at a 2-3 percent ratio.

As domestic production is anticipated to cover less than 3 percent of demand in MY 2024/25, dairy, poultry, and fish producers will continue to be reliant upon imports.

Meal production is estimated at 2.5 million tonnes, an increase of 28%. Consumption is estimated at 2.85 million tonnes.

Feed use of soymeal is forecast to be up by 5.5% compared to the previous marketing year, as soymeal is used as the major source of protein in feed rations and is extensively used due to higher availability,” the FAS said.

On consumption, Post estimates Egypt’s soybean consumption in MY 2024/25 at approximately 3.3 MMT, due to an anticipated pick up by the crushing sector on account of an increase in imports due to the availability of more foreign currency.

Egypt’s domestic consumption of soybeans for food use in MY 2024/25 will remain at roughly 17,000 MT, USDA said.

Egypt to import 700,000 tons of sunflower oil in MY 2024/25

Meanwhile, Egypt is expected to import around 700 thousand tons of sunflower oil by the end of the 2024/25 season, marking a significant increase from previous years.

This surge in imports is driven by competitive pricing and a trend towards blending sunflower oil with soybean oil.

The report also notes a substantial rise in imports from 217.4 thousand tons to over 483.8 thousand tons in the 2023/24 marketing year, with Russia and Ukraine significantly increasing their exports to Egypt by offering sunflower oil at competitive prices.

Both soybean and sunflower oil production are forecast up due to an increase in population, higher demand and the influx of foreign currency.

Egypt’s soybean, sunflower, and palm oil consumption for food and industrial use is estimated at 2.66 million tonnes, up 3.9% from last year.

The post attributes this increase to an increase in population, higher demand and the influx of foreign currency.

For all the latest grains industry news from Africa, the Middle East, and the World, subscribe to our weekly NEWSLETTERS, follow us on LinkedIn, and subscribe to our YouTube channel.