On September 16, 2022, a container cargo ship carrying 504 tons of South African citrus slowly docked at Yangshan Wharf, and the citrus appeared in major fruit stores the next morning. Shanghai is an important window for China-Africa economic and trade cooperation. In order to allow Africa's high-quality agricultural products to enter the Chinese market safely and efficiently, Shanghai Customs has built a "green channel" for the import of African agricultural products throughout the process.
According to statistics from Shanghai Customs, a total of 4.72 billion yuan of African agricultural products were imported through the Shanghai port from January to August this year. South African citrus, Kenyan avocados, and other high-quality agricultural products with African characteristics are entering the Chinese market.
China is one of the most important countries for citrus exports in South Africa. In August 2021, China and South Africa signed the Protocol on the export of fresh citrus to China, and fruits allowed to export included oranges, grapefruit, lemons, oranges, and their hybrid varieties.
In July alone, the Shanghai port ushered in the peak of South African citrus imports, with imports exceeding 34,000 tons in July and August, and more than 42,000 tons as of the end of August.
"In order to ensure the rapid customs clearance of South African citrus, we have implemented a number of reform and facilitation measures to reduce the customs clearance time to less than 2 days so that fresh citrus from the southernmost tip of Africa can enter the Chinese market as soon as possible." Wang Xiangdong, chief of the first section of Yangshan Customs Inspection, said.
On September 14, the first batch of large-scale seaborne imported Kenyan fresh avocados, after completing unified quality inspection and processing, were sold on the shelves of fresh supermarkets such as Pagoda and Hema Fresh in Shanghai, Shenzhen, and other regions. The fruits have won the favor of many consumers.
"The efficient and convenient customs clearance guarantee has further strengthened our confidence in further expanding the scale of African agricultural imports." Liu Mosu, general manager of Shanghai Niuguo Agricultural Technology Co., Ltd., said that about 200 tons of avocados are planned to be imported during the harvest season this year, and there are import plans every week from next year. It is expected that the annual import volume will exceed 9,000 tons. The enterprise gradually expanding the import scale has also witnessed closer economic and trade exchanges between China and Kenya, or more broadly, between China and Africa.