The agricultural exports of Egypt were estimated to be 4m tonnes in the season that ended last June. The Ministry of Agriculture, the Export Council and Haya Association target a 15% increase by the end of this year.
The Russian market has been one of the most prominent recipients of Egyptian agricultural products over the past few years as its imports were estimated to be $300m last season,
Abdel Hamid Al-Demerdash, the head of the Export Council for Agricultural Crops, said that the Russian market is now aware of the Egyptian products, which are now achieving high growth rates in that market compared to other markets.
The exporters of agricultural products in Egypt have always been keen on participating in international exhibitions held by Russia, he noted, adding, that exports of Egyptian vegetables and fruits account or 80% of the total Egyptian exports to Russia.
Meanwhile, he added that some crops, specifically, have a comparative advantage. These crops include oranges, strawberries, grapes, onions, and garlic, as these crops cannot be cultivated in Russia in winter because of the extreme cold.
Al-Demerdash pointed out that Egypt gives attention to fairs, such as Fruit Logistica, which is one of the largest fairs specialised in the trade of fruits and vegetables, as well as other industries based on them, such as packaging.
Importance of that fair for Egyptian agricultural products, which enable export companies to meet and start business together with clients from all over the world, he pointed.
That fair also allows participants to understand their competitors and communicate within each sector of the producing Asian sectors, as well as discover new products and understand the creative developments in trade and marketing.
It also allows exchanging ideas and information as well as meeting new clients and moving companies’ businesses towards new increases through new contracts.
Noteworthy, Egyptian agricultural exports achieved increases estimated to be 4m tonnes last season, compared to 3.8m tonnes worth $2.2bn in the export seasons ending in 2016/2017. A growth of 10-15% is expected this season.
El Demerdash explained that achieving a 200,000 tonnes increase in one season is considered a leap. The council seeks to cooperate with the exporting members, in order to achieve similar leaps each year.
Additionally, he noted that the council is attempting to increase agricultural exports through penetrating new markets, which is a new strategy that will be adopted in the markets of East Asia, Latin America, and Africa.
The council is currently cooperating with the concerned parties to include the largest number possible of agricultural crops in the new export system, which mainly relies on coding and registering all the farms that produce for exporting in order to ensure the regulations of good agricultural practices are applied.
Meanwhile, production according to agricultural rules ensures producing crops that meet the requirements of food safety in the importing countries, while taking quality into consideration, all of which increases the competitiveness of the crops against other markets, El Demerdash noted.
He added that the council will present all kinds of support to farmers and exporters in accordance with that system to ensure the soundness of the reputation of agricultural exports abroad.
In terms of markets, the KSA market is at the top of the markets importing Egyptian crops, followed by Russia, Netherlands, Kuwait, UK, and UAE.