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Weak hopes for European wheat

Слаби надежди за европейската пшеница

European wheat rose on Friday as traders watched the situation in the Red Sea develop and a growing number of bulk carriers, including grain, diverted to avoid further attacks.

Paris-based Euronext bread wheat futures for the March contract closed 0.35 percent higher at 217.75 euros a tonne. The fall in the euro as well as Egypt's latest purchase of 60,000 tonnes of French wheat also helped to stabilize prices.

Many European analysts were euphoric about the French sale, but given the forecasts for new harvests in Russia and Ukraine, it is too early to say that the battle with Black Sea origin has been won.

Attacks on shipping in the Red Sea region in recent days have led to an increase in the number of grain cargoes being diverted around the Cape of Good Hope instead of using the Suez Canal, shipping sources said on Friday.

"Nearly 3 million tonnes of the total 7 million tonnes per month that normally pass through Suez have been diverted," said Ishan Bhanu, lead agricultural commodity analyst at data and analyst provider Kpler. "So this week the number of diversions from the Red Sea has jumped from 20% to 45%."

Wheat shipments through the Suez Canal fell by almost 40 percent in the first half of January to half a million tons due to attacks in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, the World Trade Organization said Thursday on social media platform X.

Another sign that more and more companies do not want to cross the channel came from French group CMA CGM, which said on Friday it would temporarily divert its NEMO service connecting Europe, the Indian Ocean and Australia via the Cape of Good Hope.

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