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Country Briefs


Reference Date: 22-December-2022


  1. Cereal production in 2022 anticipated at nearaverage level

  2. Planting of 2023 maize crop ongoing under overall favourable weather conditions

  3. Average cereal exports forecast in 2022/23 marketing year

  4. Annual food inflation rate reached nearly 95 percent in November 2022

Cereal production in 2022 anticipated at nearaverage level

Harvesting of the 2022 wheat crop is ongoing and production is officially forecast at 13.4 million tonnes, more than 30 percent below the five‑year average. This is due to prolonged dry spells between May and October that curtailed the extent of sowings and affected yields. According to official estimates, the planted area with the 2022 wheat crop is 10 percent lower than the 2021 sowings.

The 2022 maize crop was harvested between March and July, and output is officially estimated at 59 million tonnes, 10 percent above the average, mainly reflecting large plantings and high yields of late‑planted varieties.

The aggregate cereal production in 2022 is expected at an average level of 82 million tonnes, which is substantially lower year‑on‑year, on account of the below‑average wheat output.

Favourable weather conditions forecast for 2023 maize crop

Planting operations of the 2023 late‑planted maize crop are ongoing, as recent rains replenished soil moisture deficits. Early season maize varieties were planted between September and October, and dry weather conditions curbed the extent of sowings, previously expected at a record high. In total, the area sown with the 2023 maize crops is officially forecast at an above‑average level of 10.2 million hectares. Average rainfall amounts are forecast for the 2023 January to March period, boosting yield prospects.

Average cereal exports forecast in 2022/23 marketing year

Exports of maize, the country’s major exportable cereal, are forecast at an above‑average level of 37.5 million tonnes in the 2022/23 marketing year (March/February), reflecting the ample exportable surplus in 2022. By contrast, exports of wheat are forecast to be well below the average in the 2022/23 marketing year (December/November), mainly due to the sharp decline in production. Overall, the aggregate cereal exports in 2022/23 are anticipated at a near‑average level of 50 million tonnes.

Annual food inflation rate reached nearly 95 percent in November 2022

Wholesale prices of wheat have been rising at a sharp rate since February 2022, amid strong increases in international prices following the start of the war in Ukraine. In recent months, unfavourable production prospects provided additional pressure on prices. As of November 2022, prices were more than double their levels a year earlier. Similarly, prices of maize generally increased throughout 2022 and, in November, they were well above their year‑earlier levels, despite the above‑average output gathered in 2022.

Overall, retail prices of food items are steadily rising, amid a difficult macroeconomic situation and the annual inflation rate of food and non‑alcoholic beverages was estimated at nearly 95 percent in November 2022. To contain the price increases, the government launched the Precios Justos Programme, fixing retail prices of 1 500 basic commodities, including food items, from November 2022 to February 2023.

Disclaimer: The designations employed and the presentation of material in this information product do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of FAO concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.