India is in final talks to start wheat exports to Egypt, one of the largest importers of wheat from Ukraine as well as Russia, the India’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry has said.

“India is in final talks to start wheat export to Egypt, while discussions are going on with countries like Turkey, China, Bosnia, Sudan, Nigeria, Iran, to start wheat export,” the ministry said in a statement.

This pronouncement comes amid a sharp dip in global wheat production largely due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Experts have previously reiterated that the two countries were responsible for nearly one-third of global wheat exports before the conflict began.

India accounts for about less than one per cent of the world wheat export but has continuously been witnessing its share increase from 0.14 per cent in 2016 to 0.54 per cent in 2020, the ministry said, adding that India is the second-largest producer of wheat with a share of around 14.14 per cent of world total production in 2020.

“India produces around 107.59 Million MT of wheat annually while a major chunk of it goes towards domestic consumption. Major wheat growing states in India are Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Bihar and Gujarat,” it said added.

 According to the ministry, the government of India has given assurances that it will make sufficient railway capacity available to meet any immediate surge in demand for wheat exports. It has also added that port authorities have been asked to increase the number of terminals and containers dedicated to wheat.

Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority, an arm of the commerce ministry of India, held a meeting of stakeholders last week on how to increase shipments of wheat to different regions of the world that is needed critically as of now.

According to data from India’s farm ministry, wheat output is likely rise to a record 111.3 million tons in 2021-22, from 109.6 million tonnes a year earlier.

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