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PARIS: European wheat prices were firm on Tuesday on strong international demand and hot weather threatening spring crops while awaiting more details on talks to create a safe corridor for ships carrying Ukraine’s cereal and oilseed exports.

Benchmark December milling wheat on Paris-based Euronext, was up 1.4% by 1549 GMT to 328.25 euros a tonne.

Egypt’s state grains buyer, the General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) said it would seek to buy an unspecified amount of wheat from any origin in direct talks with trading houses after cancelling an international tender earlier in the day.

The international tender, for the same shipment periods, had excluded its traditional supplier regions in the Black Sea and Europe, with only wheat from the United States offered.

In France port data confirmed a brisk start of the export season with a long list of ships loading or waiting to load grains in French ports, including 16 ones with wheat heading for Morocco.

“The French lineup is full and it doesn’t look like it’s going to end soon,” a trader said.

Scorching temperatures in Europe also supported prices. Many parts of the continent are suffering from record high temperatures which are threatening spring crops such as maize but enabled farmers to speed up harvesting.

With only 1.9 millimeters (0.07 inch) across France, July 18 included, the month of July 2022 is on track to be one of the driest since 1959, weather forecaster Meteo France said.

Rain expected to cross France from south-west to north-east, on the night of Tuesday to Wednesday, will have difficulty in catching up with the delay accumulated, it added.

Meanwhile Germany experienced its hottest day of the year with temperatures of 38 degrees Celsius common.

“There is concern about dryness damage to maize which urgently needs good volumes of rain,” a German trader said. “A good point about the weather is that wheat is being harvested very dry which is positive.”

Traders were awaiting the results of a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkey’s Tayyip Erdogan during a visit of the Russian leader to Tehran to discuss a deal that would resume Ukraine’s Black Sea grain exports.

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