Afghanistan ups fruit exports, looks to Russia and Kazakhstan markets

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KABUL (TCA) — Afghanistan has exported 255 tons of fresh fruit so far this year to India, Europe and Arab countries, a 30 percent increase compared to the same period in 2018, Afghan broadcaster TOLOnews reported with reference to the country’s Ministry of Industry and Commerce.

The ministry’s spokesman Samir Rasa on August 3 said that the exports have increased after the inauguration of the air corridors between Afghanistan and India, UAE, China and Turkey.

Apples, pomegranates, melons, watermelons and grapes are the main fresh fruits which are exported to India, China, UAE and some European countries.

“The highest level of fresh fruit exports is to India which is about 189 tons,” Rasa said. “At least 63 tons of fresh fruit was exported to Arab countries and the remaining was sent to European countries.”

Rasa said that the ministry eyes more increase in the exports by the end of the year.

At the same time, lack of modern facilities at Afghanistan’s airports, including cold storage facilities and required scanners, is a major challenge for Afghan investors, an official of Afghanistan Chamber Commerce and Industry (ACCI) said.

Fresh fruit exporters said Afghan investors need ground routes for sending their goods besides sending them through the newly-established air corridors.

“We urge the government to establish air corridor with Moscow and Kazakhstan,” said Nejabat Haidari, member of Fresh Fruit and Vegetables Exporters Union.

Sergey Kwan

TCA