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Farmers Face Competition

France and other leading global wheat exporters, normally undercut by cheap Russian supplies, are poised to snag new business from top importer Egypt, with Russia's drought-depleted export surplus predicted to dry up within weeks.

Traders said Egypt's state wheat buyer, the General Authority for Supply Commodities, will see few or no offers for Russian wheat in its tender issued Tuesday for December shipment.

"Egypt is bound to turn to France as the first alternative to the Black Sea, but it will buy as much as possible from Russia, Ukraine, Romania and others while they are still available," a German trader said.

Depressed freight rates are expected to make the U.S., Canada, Argentina and Australia competitive in coming months too, as the cost of shipping will be significantly reduced.


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