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Pakistan faces risk of losing $50 MIO rice market in East Africa
Pakistan Times Business, Jan 08, 2005
Pakistan was facing a risk of losing $ 50 million market for its coarse rice in East African countries due to recently increased import duty of 75 percent.

This was stated by former chairman Rice Exporters Association of Pakistan (REAP) Abdul Rahim Janoo while addressing a hurriedly called press conference after presiding over a meeting of large number of leading rice exporters at his office here Thursday.

He said the rice exporters have decided to approach top authorities in Pakistan early next week for resolving the duty issue with Kenyan authorities at the highest level.

Janoo pointed out that a five-member committee of rice exporters will try to get appointment with the Prime Minister in Islamabad on an urgent basis early next week and apprise him of the serious problem facing rice exporters to Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania.

He said these countries have increased import duty on rice from 35 to 75 percent, resulting in cancellation of export contract for 4000 metric tons of rice.

He pointed out that other importers have held back purchase orders till the solution of this issue which has created a confusion among importers and exporters in East African countries and Pakistan respectively.

Janoo said local prices of IRRI-6 rice have decreased from Rs 13.30 per kilo to Rs 13 per kilo after the increase in import duty in East African countries. It is feared that prices will further decline, causing losses to local growers, he added.

“We will suggest the Prime Minister to use tea import as a tool to protect our rice as Pakistan was the biggest importer of Kenyan tea with 28 percent of its total tea export. Last year, Pakistan imported 82,000 tonnes of tea worth $ 164 million from Kenya while Pakistan exported rice worth $ 28 million with balance of trade in favour of Kenya”, Janoo noted.

He said the African countries grow only a limited quantity of rice and most of their requirements are met through imports from Pakistan, China, India and Vietnam.
MGR Archive 8.1.2005
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