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AWB signs agreement with Egypt
Australian Business News, May 10, 2004
AWB Ltd has signed a heads of agreement with the Egyptian Government to pursue a number of initiatives, including the opportunity for a long-term supply of wheat.
AWB managing director Mr Andrew Lindberg and the Egyptian Minister of Supply and Internal Trade, Dr Hassan Khedr, signed the agreement in Canberra.

Mr Lindberg said: "The agreement seeks to build on the successful trade relationship AWB has had with Egypt for over 50 years and in 2003/04 AWB is positioned to export in excess of 2.3 million tonnes to Egypt."

The agreement also seeks to investigate the possibility of future investment by AWB in grain silos at Ain Sokhna Port, Egypt.
Additionally, AWB is looking at arranging a credit facility for Egyptian wheat purchases, and opportunities for increasing Egyptian exports such as fertiliser will be explored.

The parties will firstly conduct a feasibility study to develop the details in the heads of agreement.

"Once the feasibility study is completed and its benefits confirmed, the parties will be in a position to sign a contract later in the year, which would formalise the deal," Mr Lindberg said.

"Such an agreement has the potential to lead to a long-term supply arrangement for wheat between AWB and Egypt which would provide financial benefits and security to Australian wheat growers," he said.

AWB also announced today that it had lifted its estimated pool returns for new and old season wheat, with 2004/05 EPR ranges increasing by $5 per tonne.

This takes the range for 2004/05 APW to between $210/t and $220/t (FOB, GST exclusive), with APDR also up $5/t to $220 to $230/t.

AWB National Pool general manager Ms Sarah Scales said AWB had also captured benefits of a more favourable exchange rate for the 2003/04 pool, with major milling grades lifted by between $2/t and $3/t.

Benchmark APW is up $2/t at $226/t.

"AWB's currency risk management strategies have allowed pool participants to benefit from the weaker exchange rate we are seeing today, while protecting them from the negative impact of a stronger Australian dollar when it was near US80c earlier in the year," Ms Scales said.

Ms Scales said the world wheat market remained focused on crop progress around the globe, with May a critical month for US hard red winter wheat development and US corn plantings, which were important influencing factors on US wheat futures.
MGR Archive 11.5.2004
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Russia Rapan $ 700
USA Jupiter Rice $630
USA Calrose #1 $830
USA Calrose #1 Paddy $480
EU Prices Baldo €660
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