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Iran’s domestic wheat purchases near $2 billion: GTC

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Iran says it has spent nearly $2 billion on domestic wheat purchases over the past four months.

Iran has spent nearly $2 billion on purchases of wheat from domestic farmers since early April, according to a statement by the Government Trading Corporation of Iran (GTC) which indicates that purchases have risen by nearly a half compared with the end of the last harvesting season in July 2021.

GTC’s Wednesday statement said that the company had settled 82% or around 600 trillion rials of the payments related to purchases of wheat from Iranian farmers.

It said another 50 trillion rials ($160 million) will be paid within the next few days to encourage farmers to supply their crop to government silos rather than to brokers and private buyers.

The statement said that wheat purchases from Iranian farmers under GTC’s guaranteed purchase scheme had increased by 46% compared to last year to reach 6.429 million metric tons.

It added that domestic supply of wheat are expected to further increase this year as purchase will continue in various provinces especially those in northern Iran where harvesting began in late July.

Iran ordered a double increase in the guaranteed price of wheat purchase from local farmers in February after international prices began to surge because of a war between Ukraine and Russia, the two countries that collectively account for 30% of the global wheat supply.

Iranian agriculture ministry said earlier this week that domestic wheat purchases could exceed 7 million tons this year while it insisted that the figure could reach 9 million tons next year with a major expansion of contract farming for wheat in Iran.

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