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Bolivia: Banana crisis
Exporters of bananas from Cochabamba state that they are experiencing an emergency due to a weekly loss of a million bolivianos (1 Bolivian boliviano = 0.142653 U.S. dollars). The losses are blamed on the import restrictions that Argentina implemented last year. The neighbouring country is the main importer of Cochabamba bananas.
Yesterday, speaking on behalf of Cochabamba producers at a conference in the Cadexco, Guzmán stated that Argentinian traders have tightened the conditions for imported fruit.
The restrictions are said to have been employed in regard to a 10 billion dollar trade surplus in Argentina’s economy in 2012. In reality, claims Guzmán, this policy is meant to protect domestic markets interests. Each individual importer in Argentina has to prove he can export the same amount of produce.
Casualties of this policy include over 10,000 workers in Cochabamba’s banana industry. Banana producers in the region are therefore imploring governmental officials to negotiate an alleviation of the Argentinian restrictions.
“We expected the implementations to be active until June,” says Guzmán, “but it now seems they’re here to stay. Shelf life is running out, we are losing 30 to 35% and prices are dropping.”
Publication date: 8/20/2012
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