Afghanistan has imposed an import duty on kinnows from Pakistan, upsetting the 100,000-tons market to exporters. The two countries remain in talks, aimed at signing a preferential trade agreement, besides revising existing agreements.
In a letter sent to the Ministry of Commerce, Pakistan Fruit and Vegetable Exporters Importers and Merchant Association (PFVA) has informed that Afghanistan has raised taxes by an increase in assessed value of kinnows from Pakistan, which will increase the value of grapes from Afghanistan by Pakistan Customs.
Pakistantoday.com.pk reports that the association has informed that kinnow export to Afghanistan is a lifeline for kinnow exporters as Pakistan is exporting is No-2 category and small sized kinnows to Afghanistan which is not exported anywhere else.
Lack of acceptance in Afghanistan and Iranian markets
Kinnow exports are going slow in the ongoing season, mostly because of lack of acceptance in Afghanistan and Iranian markets through land routes, an industry official said on Friday.
“Citrus exports have been sluggish in the first month of the season with processing units working at 50 percent of their output capacity,” said Ahmad Jawad, Vice President Pakistan Businesses Forum in a statement. Jawad said in previous seasons Pakistani kinnow was mostly routed through Afghanistan for Central Asain states, but this time the acceptability was less.
“If the situation doesn’t change, Pakistan can miss kinnow exports can drop to 70,000 tons, missing the target by a big margin by the end of season.” Jawad said as total production of kinnow was around 2.1 million tons, the production of quality exportable kinnow was appropriate.
According to thenews.com.pk, the country's kinnow industry is worth around US$781 million and the entire economy of Punjab's key Bhalwal and Sargodha areas depends on kinnow cultivation. Some 250 kinnow processing facilities in the region provide direct employment to 250,000 people.
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