MULTAN: Corona virus pandemic severely affected exports of South Punjab mangoes. Government should make special arrangements for export of mangoes. With 40 per cent of mango crop being produced for export, lack of medium to transport the fresh fruit is likely to hit farmers hard. South Punjab mango cultivators will bear huge loss due to corona virus.
It was stated by former President Mango Growers Association Syed Zahid Hussain Gardezi while talking to Customs Today regarding issues in export of South Punjab mangoes.
The novel coronavirus wreaked havoc in Pakistan and abroad, has not spared king of fruits, mango in South Punjab. With mango season just starting, the fruit is in great demand in Gulf, European countries and America.
He said that people staying in foreign countries waits for the mango season. However, due to the corona virus outbreak traders are unable to export mangoes.
Farmers of South Punjab invest a lot in mangoes. The fruit of mango is always in high demand in foreign countries. If mangoes are not exported, farmers of South Punjab will suffer huge losses.
At present export of mangoes through air has been completely shut down. The other option is by sea, but that takes a lot of time.” Mango orchards are located over thousands of acres in the South Punjab region. Multan is on top in its cultivation with an area of over 31,000 hectares of mango orchards followed by Rahimyar Khan, Muzaffargarh and Khanewal with cultivation area 26,000, 19,000 and 14,000 hectares respectively.
Mangoes of South Punjab especially Multan were matchless in flavor and aroma.
Syed Zahid Hussain Gardezi informed Customs Today that even if they sent shipments via sea, there is no guarantee they will reach the desire destination, “In Gulf countries, the ship first goes to Dubai and then the goods are transferred to other countries by road.
But the countries have closed their doors, so the situation looks very dangerous for mango market. “An average production of mangoes was about 1.8 million metric tons annually in the country, he told. It used to export approximately one hundred thousand tones. About 40 to 50 per cent low production was being feared in the ongoing season due to low fruiting in orchards.
Novel Corona pandemic would also affect exports of South Punjab mangoes and ultimately farmers would face more losses and country will also deprived from major export revenue.
Mangoes bring a lot of revenue from foreign countries because they pay a huge amount for mangoes. Also if something is not done, the prices of mangoes will crash and directly effect of South Punjab and traders.
He urged the government to make special arrangements for exporting mangoes. They can arrange special flights, because if mangoes are not exported that at least half of the crop will go waste. The negative impact on farmers will be beyond one imagination.
He requested government to facilitate the growers in obtaining export orders of mangoes from neighboring and countries of the Middle East and also proposed that Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) should facilitate pulp industry.