EU to ease import control restrictions on Egyptian grapes

Ahram Online , Monday 27 Nov 2017

The decision comes in response to a new Egyptian policy banning exports from unregistered farms

The European Union agreed to remove Egyptian table grapes from a list of foods that are subject to an increased level of official import controls, Agriculture Minister Abdel-Moneim El-Banna announced Monday, Ahram’s Arabic website reported.

The European Commission’s Standing Committee on Plants, Animals, Food and Feed voted in favor of removing the Egyptian grapes from the list during meetings held in Brussels on 8-10 November.
The reduction of the level of official controls comes after the Agriculture Ministry implemented a new policy under which only registered Egyptian farms are allowed to export grapes.
The decision is yet to be made official, as the standing committee only “delivers opinions on draft measures that the Commission intends to adopt,” according to its official page.
The current inspection protocol requires an additional 20% inspection rate over other imports, which means that two out of every 10 containers in each shipment are inspected, Agriculture Export Council Executive Director Hani Hussein told Al-Ahram’s Arabic website.
Since 2012 Egyptian grapes been on the list of food “subject to an increased level of official controls for certain pesticides at the point of entrance into the EU territory,” according to the EU’s official document.
Last month, Jordan lifted a ban on imports of Egyptian potatoes imposed in June 2016.
Also last month, Bahrain, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates agreed to lift a ban on imports of Egyptian agricultural products.
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