Egypt is keen to plant new biotech crops and would not be against the purchase of genetically modified wheat if the crop is commercialised in the US, according to an official with the Egyptian Agriculture Ministry.

Magdy Madkour, head of the ministry's Agriculture Research Centre told Dow Jones News: "I am responsible for the introduction of agriculture biotechnology into Egypt. Let me reassure you that in our plan we are adopting biotechnology."

Madkour, who is attending the US Department of Agriculture's Ministerial Conference and Expo on Agriculture Science and Technology in Sacramento, said he hopes to make a "presentation on public-private partnership...involving the public sector from Egypt with the private sector from US companies like Monsanto."