Egypt's dates exports rise 73 percent in 9 months

MENA , Ahram Online , Saturday 10 Nov 2018

Palm dates tree (Photo: Al-Ahram)

Egypt's exports of dates have recorded a significant increase over the past nine months of 2018 compared to the same period in 2017, as they hit $35.3 million with an increase of 73 percent.

The figures were revealed on Friday by Deputy Executive Director of the Industrial Modernization Center Ahmed Taha in an address he gave on behalf of Trade and Industry Minister Amr Nassar at the concluding ceremony of the fourth Dates Festival in Siwa Oasis held under the auspices of President Abdel Fattah El Sisi.

Over the months from January to September this year, Egypt exported 37.4 tonnes of dates with an increase of 61 percent, Taha said.

He pointed out that Egypt exports only 2.7 percent of its total production of dates, which accounts for 4 percent of the global date trade. This places it on the 8th position among the world’s top ten exporters of dates, he noted.

The markets of Indonesia, Morocco and Malaysia receive 87 percent of the Egyptian exports of dates, Taha said.

In 2017, Egypt exported dates to 58 countries around the world, he added.

The Trade and Industry Ministry has developed a national strategy to develop the dates sector by cooperating with the related international organizations to increase the number of date factories as well as renovate 160 ones nationwide, he said.

He also said that the Siwa festival aims at tapping new markets and increasing date exports by 300 percent to reach 120 thousand tons annually in addition to raising the price of exported dates to reach $1,500 per tonne instead of the current $1,000 per tonne.

He said that Siwa is a role model for comprehensive development in all domains particularly in the manufacturing of dates.

The event was organized by the Trade and Industry Ministry, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), and the Khalifa International Award for Date Palm and Agricultural Innovation and Matrouh governorate.

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