"Millions" could die globally from wheat shortage, Egypt warns

PanARMENIAN.Net - Increases in food prices triggered by Russia's war in Ukraine could kill "millions" of people globally, Egypt’s finance minister has cautioned, echoing warnings made by the UN and G7 countries over the worldwide wheat shortage, the Middle East Eye reports.

Mohamed Maait expressed concern regarding "food insecurity" around the world in an interview with Financial Times in London while insisting that Egypt has enough wheat to last until the end of the year.

Ukraine and Russia are among the biggest producers and exporters of wheat, corn and cooking oil, the global supplies of which have been threatened since Russia's 24 February invasion.

"This is something that we have to be very careful about," Maait said. "We will feel shame if we find that millions of people are dying because of food insecurity. They are not responsible for that, they didn’t do anything wrong."

Maait's comments come days after UN secretary-general Antonio Guterres warned that the Ukraine conflict risked plunging "tens of millions" into famine.

"Global hunger levels are at a new high," said Guterres. In addition to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, are the issues of climate change and the Covid-19 pandemic, which have compounded a crisis that could last for years, he warned.

Photo. AFP
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