Kinnow exports likely to drop by 150,000 tonnes
KARACHI: The export of kinnow has started from December 1, however significant drop in exportable surplus is being observed this season in the export volume, which is the lowest.
According to Pakistan Fruit and Vegetable Association (PFVA) Chairman Waheed Ahmed, the production of kinnow is expected to be 165,000 tonnes, but due to climatic hazards and unfavourable weather conditions, it may not only lessen production but also reduce the export volume.
Under the said uncertain circumstances and current climatic conditions, the kinnow export target has been reconciled at 200,000 tonnes, which is comparatively 150,000 tonnes less than the previous season export volume.
“It is unfortunate that the production of valued fruit had decreased mainly because of the climatic change, which has now become another challenge for growers, exporters and the government institutions,” waheed said.
To save Pakistan’s kinnow industry, PFVA has emphasised on upgrading the level of research and development.
According to Waheed, the export of kinnow would largely depend on the traditional markets abroad including Russia, UAE, Philippine, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Hong Kong, Singapore, Canada and others.
Iranian market, considered as a market of 70,000 tonnes Pakistani kinnow, is unfortunately reduced to less than 1,000 tonnes for exporters due to various unresolved issues. High duty imposed by the Iranian government on import of fruit and reluctance in issuing permit to Pakistani exporters in this regard are presently the hindrances in trade of fresh fruits with the neighbouring country.
In addition, reluctance on the part of Pakistani banks in issuing E-forms for export, to Iran following the US economic sanctions of Tehran, is further discouraging the exporters to look towards the nearest lucrative market.
Waheed said Pakistan, keeping in view the softened economic restrictions on Tehran followed by the nuclear deal with western countries, should also come forward to remove hindrances in trade relations with the neighbouring country, adding that removal of trade barriers may easily export 0.1 million tonnes kinnows to single country.
Besides, the exporters are also trying to tap markets in Thailand, which is another lucrative market of this fruit. Thailand is already importing citrus fruits worth $145 million from China, Taiwan, Australia South Korea and others.