Brazil increases restrictions on Argentinean fruits

Brazil's Plant Protection Department (MAPA) notified importers of apples and pears they were reinstating the import licenses for these products from Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay and that additional agencies were going to be part of the importing process. 

The measure, which took effect on October 11, caused concern among regional exporters. 

Currently, apple licenses are operational and require the participation of few governmental agencies. The new measure seems incomprehensible, since the export of these fruits has been developing normally. 

To sum up: up to Friday, Brazil required Argentinian apples had licenses and were monitored by the state, a mechanism that, starting now, pears will also have to follow. The monitoring, however, won't only be conducted by the state but also by other national agencies. Thus, the fruits will undergo more bureaucracy and it will take them longer to reach the fruit stands. 

Brazil had already applied these licenses in November 2011 and they caused great damage to the export of Argentine pome. "At that time, the damage amounted to several million dollars and the delay of the trucks at the border affected small, medium and large exporters. While it is true that, off the record, Brazil has stated they wish the measure generates less impact this time, the truth is the intervention of more agencies in the approval of an Import license will prolong the time it currently takes to get one (15 days at the moment) and the pears will also be affected by these regulations," stated Argentina's Chamber of Integrated Fruit Growers (CAFI). 

The exporting sector stated their uncertainty; as they wouldn't be able to predict when their cargo would be authorized, which would have logistical implications and would increase costs and delays in the flow of foreign exchange. 

CAFI began contacting the provincial and national agencies to denounce this change on trade controls so that they request the elimination of the measure. 

Brazil accounts for 30% to 35% of total exports of fruits of the valley. 

Source: Diario Rio Negro

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