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Algeria buys at least 500,000 T wheat in tender - traders

PARIS (Reuters) - Algeria's state grains agency OAIC bought at least 500,000 tonnes of milling wheat at between $195 and $197 a tonne, cost and freight, in a tender that closed on Wednesday, European traders said on Thursday.

Several traders said the volume could total around 600,000 tonnes as OAIC covers its needs for part of February as well as March. The tender had called for shipment in February and March.

The origin of the grain was optional but some of the volume was expected to come from Argentina, in addition to Algeria's main supplier France, traders said.

Argentine wheat is being quoted at very aggressive prices as traders anticipate the country will ship significant volumes after the incoming government promised to scrap export taxes on wheat and corn, traders added.

OAIC does not publish details of its international tenders and results reported by traders are estimates.

(Reporting by Gus Trompiz)