EGYPT – Egypt’s wheat production for MY 2023/2024 is expected to remain unchanged at 9.8 million metric tons (MMT) from the 2022/2023 estimate, according to a report from the Foreign Agricultural Service of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA).
However, FAS Cairo (Post) forecast Egypt’s corn and rice production are expected to rise by 2.1% and 5% from MY 2022/23 (October – September) estimate respectively.
According to Post, the area harvested for wheat for MY2023/24 is set to remain at 1.53 million hectares (HA) like the previous marketing year but the production will remain high following the development of breeding and cultivation practices in the country.
Post forecasts Egypt’s wheat consumption in MY 2023/24 at 20.5 MMT, up by almost 2.0 percent from the MY 2022/23 estimate of 20.1 MMT following the increase in food, seed, and industrial use (FSI) consumption due to the increasing population.
The USDA revised wheat consumption down by 1.95 percent from MY 2021/22 estimate of 20.5 MMT attributing to higher prices of flour, baked products, cakes, biscuits, wafers, croissants, and pastries, etc., as well as an increase in the price of European and white flatbread (non-subsidized).
According to the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS), baked products and cereals have increased by 76.7 percent in February 2023 compared to the same month in CY 2022.
However, USDA reports that despite inflated prices of cereals and baked products, no wheat, flour, bread, or baked products shortages have been observed in bakeries, local markets, or commercial retail stores.
On the other hand, bread subsidies are expected to reach 90 billion EGP by the end of FY 2022/23. Positively, despite this huge increase, the state has not raised bread prices.
To meet the demand for the increasing population, Egypt is expected to import 10.8MMT of wheat in MY 2023/24 (July – June), up by approximately 2.9 percent from MY 2022/23.
FAS Cairo forecasts Egypt’s ending stocks in MY 2023/24 at 3.1 MMT, down by 8.7 percent from Post’s MY 2022/23 estimate due to a forecasted increase in consumption.
Corn, rice, production and consumption to rise
Post forecasts corn production in MY 2023/24 (October – September) at 7.6 MMT, up from MY 2022/23 (October – September) estimate by 2.1 percent.
The increase is attributed to a possible increase in planted area of 20,000 hectares coupled with high corn prices in the domestic market that will encourage many farmers to plant more corn during the summer of 2023.
With increasing production, corn consumption for MY 2023/24 (October – September) is forecast at 13.9 MMT, up by almost 3.0 percent from the MY 2022/23 (October – September) estimate of 13.5 MMT.
The increase in consumption is attributed to a 3.6 percent increase in feed and residual consumption from Post’s estimate in the previous marketing year.
However, MY 2022/23 corn consumption was revised down by 20.6 percent from MY 2021/22 estimate of 17 MMT due to a significant decrease in MY 2022/23 feed and residual consumption.
Egypt is expected to import 6.5 MMT of corn up by 500,000 MT from Post’s estimate in the previous marketing year while corn stocks in MY 2023/24 are expected to reach 1.68 MMT up by 13 percent from the previous year.
Post forecasts Egypt’s milled rice production and area harvested in MY 2023/24 (October – September) to increase by 5 percent from Post’s estimates in MY 2022/23.
This increase is attributed to the high prices of rough and milled rice currently in the market which could motivate farmers to increase areas of the crop
Post forecasts Egypt’s rice consumption and residual at 4.0 MMT in MY 2023/24 up by approximately 5.2 percent from Post’s estimate in MY 2022/23.
Due to expected higher local production, Post estimates rice imports in MY 2023/24 (October – September) at 250,000 down by 300,000 MT from Post’s MY 2022/23 estimate.