RABAT, June 12 Morocco's Attijariwafa Bank
, one of the three major banks in the North African
country, has signed a deal with Moroccan wheat trade federation
FIAC to finance $300 million of Russian wheat imports in the
The deal was signed in Moscow when the Moroccan bank's
managers attended a Morocco-Russia economic forum on June 10, it
said on Thursday. Two trading companies, Louis Dreyfus Vostok
and Glencore Grain, took part of the deal, it added.
Morocco, like other North African countries, depends on
imports of staple cereals. It is expected to buy around 2.5
million tonnes of foreign wheat in the 2013-2014 marketing year.
"It is a contractual framework under which Moroccan
importers would buy the equivalent of $300 million of Russian
wheat in the 2014-2015 season," Attijariwafa said in a
Morocco's import campaign typically runs from October to May
when the local harvest starts. But millers and wheat importers
have asked the government to establish a longer window for
imports, which could be a disadvantage for its main supplier,
France, in the face of growing competition from Russia and
Black Sea countries such as Russia tend to dominate wheat
exports at the start of the international marketing year, which
begins in July, as they offload large volumes at often
The Moroccan government is yet to decide on a longer import
"We are able now to satisfy the most part of the Moroccan
demand. It is a win-win agreement," FIAC president Chakib Alj
was quoted as saying in Attijariwafa's statement.
Morocco expects a cereal harvest this year of 6.7 million
tonnes, including 3.7 million tonnes of soft wheat, down from
9.7 million tonnes in 2013.
(Reporting by Aziz El Yaakoubi; Editing by Mark Potter)