‘Mango exporters worried over high cargo charges’

The Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FPCCI), regional chairman on horticulture exports committee, Ahmad Jawad has said mango exporters are disappointed due to high rates of air cargo which would impact mango exports from Pakistan. He said, "Over 50-percent Pakistani mango is shipped by air for the purpose of export due to its small shelf life, if the airlines continue to increase their rates every year, it would not be possible for Pakistani mango exporters' to sell mangoes to high value markets."

Quoting an example, he said that from Karachi to London, airlines charged $1.72 per kg comparatively from Bombay to London; they charged $1.26 per kg. Such comparison must realise that how much difference was for the UK market only between the price of Indian and Pakistani mangoes. He said this year country's mango production also suffered due to long hail storms in South Punjab and unexpected climatic changes. More or less this year Pakistani mango exporters likely to close at around 80,000 tons of exports by the end of this season, he opined.

Jawad urged that aviation ministry to evolve some mechanism to streamline the cargo rates of the airlines to facilitate fresh produce exports. Likewise, commerce ministry may form a mechanism that if any exporter enters into the new market, the government will give them a 15% reimbursement on the invoice value to encourage the mango exporters as well encouraging the "Pakistan Brand" through the king of fruit. He said that climatic changes are big challenge for the entire agriculture sector, including horticulture sector. With use of modern technology the damage caused by hail storms can be avoided and losses can be minimised, he said.