September 4, 2018 / 2:21 PM / 19 days ago

Algeria cereal imports bill up 11.3 pct in Jan-July - customs

ALGIERS, Sept 4 (Reuters) - Algeria’s spending on imports of cereals, semolina and flour in the first seven months of this year rose 11.3 percent over the same period in 2017, official data showed on Tuesday.

The North African country has been trying to reduce imports of grain and other goods in a bid to cut spending due to lower energy revenues.

The import bill for durum wheat, soft wheat, semolina and flour went up to $1.88 billion from $1.69 billion in the January-July period of 2017, according to customs figures.

It gave no details on volumes.

Algeria, one of the world’s largest grain importers, saw its cereal output grow by 74.4 percent to 6 million tonnes this year from 3.5 million tonnes in 2017.

Overall expenditure on food imports rose to $5.236 billion from $5.185 billion in the first seven months of 2017. (Reporting by Hamid Ould Ahmed Editing by Ulf Laessing and Edmund Blair)

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