EghtesadOnline: More than 276,410 tons of wheat worth $70.78 million were exported from Iran during the first nine months of the current fiscal year (March 21-Dec. 21, 2017), registering a 1,352% and 759% growth in weight and value respectively compared with the similar period of last year, the Agriculture Ministry announced.
Iran exported its first wheat consignment of 29,630 tons to neighboring Oman on June 12, 2017.
According to the ministry’s report, over 60,720 tons of wheat worth $17.08 million were imported during the same period, indicating a 95.6% and 94.9% decline compared with the corresponding period of last year, ISNA reported.
Ministry officials have banned wheat imports, as Iran has reached self-sufficiency in the production of the crop. The above-mentioned imports are related to order registrations placed before the ban was imposed last year, according to Financial Tribune.
A record high of 14 million tons of wheat were domestically produced last year, more than 11.76 million tons of which worth over $4 billion were purchased by the government from local farmers at guaranteed prices. This helped Iran achieve self-sufficiency in wheat production after about a decade.
More than 8.87 million tons of wheat worth 116 trillion rials ($2.83 billion) have been purchased from local farmers by the government this year.
“This year’s production, once again, renders us self-sufficient,” Yazdan Seif, the head of Government Trading Corporation of Iran, was quoted as saying by Fars News Agency.
GTC is a government-owned company specializing in the purchase, import and distribution of essential foodstuff. It is the lever for enforcing market controls.
The company is also in charge of maintaining a supply of wheat, rice, cooking oil and meat for the country’s strategic reserve of essential goods.
Every year, the government also buys strategic crops, including wheat, from local farmers at guaranteed prices to control prices in the domestic market.