May 24, 2014 / 8:05 AM / 5 years ago

Egypt has bought around 3 mln tonnes of local wheat - minister

A farmer harvests wheat on a field in the El-Menoufia governorate, about 9.94 km (58 miles) north of Cairo April 23, 2013. REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt, the world biggest wheat importer, has bought around 3 million tonnes of local wheat from farmers since the harvest began last month, Supplies Minister Khaled Hanafi was quoted by state news agency MENA as saying on Saturday.

The government wants to buy more of the local crop to cut its food imports bill. It aims to purchase 4.4 million tonnes of local wheat in the harvest that ends next month. With the harvest in full swing in northern parts of the Nile Delta and nearly finished in fields further south, it appears likely to meet that target.

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