KARACHI: South Korea has become the third new high-value market, after the United States and Japan, that has allowed mango import from Pakistan after approving the country’s quality standards, traders say.
Exporters have started making preparations to send the first mango shipment in the ongoing season.
In a statement issued on Monday, Pakistan Fruit and Vegetable Exporters, Importers and Merchants Association Co-chairman Waheed Ahmed said the Korean market was important because the fruit could be exported through sea route. “It can be a second important destination for sea shipments after Dubai,” he remarked.
The development came after visiting Korean experts approved the quality of Pakistani mango. To assess the quality standards, they visited the hard water treatment facility of Iftikhar Ahmed and Company and Pakistan Horti Fresh Processing Limited.
The fruit treatment facilities were found satisfactory and as per required standards of an importing country.
Waheed gave credit to the efforts of Pakistan Horticulture Development and Export Company, Pakistan’s embassy in Seoul as well as his association for the landmark achievement.
According to him, though Korea imports mango from the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam and other countries, the unique taste and quality of Pakistani fruit were enough to compete and win a good share in the foreign market.
Less distance between Pakistan and South Korea compared to ports of other lucrative markets would be an added advantage for the exporters, he said.
Consignments could be shipped within 14 days to Seoul, where at least 10,000 to 15,000 tons of mangoes could be exported per year. However, due to absence of marketing and advertisements, exports could remain limited this season.
Waheed asked the state-owned Trade Development Authority of Pakistan to arrange a visit of exporters to South Korea in order to introduce different mango varieties.
In the last three years, Pakistan has got access to the markets of the US, Japan, Jordan, Mauritius and South Korea. Efforts are under way to tap another important export destination – Australia.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 3rd, 2012.
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