Dawn | Friday, 19 Feb, 2010
FTAs with Ukraine, Indonesia, EU urged
By Muzaffar Qureshi
KARACHI: The All-Pakistan Fruit and Vegetable Importers and Exporters Association has urged the government to sign free trade agreements with Ukraine, Indonesia and Europe to give boost to export of kinno, which is in great demand in these countries.
Waheed Ahmed, chairman of the association, said a delegation held a meeting with Secretary of Commerce in Islamabad recently who assured them that the draft of FTA with Ukraine and Indonesia was ready for signing waiting for some minor points.
However, negotiations for an FTA with EU have been started which would take some time.
Mr Waheed said that delegation of the association would visit Poland and Russia to explore the market for Pakistan kinno and potato there.
Many Eastern Europe countries like Poland export Pakistani citrus fruits indirectly from Rotterdam. However direct export to these countries would help exporters fetch a good price.
As a result of good crop and aggressive marketing by exporters, kinno export has crossed the target of 200,000 tons and it would achieve the mark of 225,000 tons by the end of season in April.
The increase is expected to be 75,000 tons this year.
Wahid complained that shipping companies continue to charge higher freight on Pakistani kinno despite the fact that freights have come down for exports from other countries, including India.