China likely to allow six more agricultural products from Bangladesh


| Update:
March 22, 2022 4:35:43 p.m.

China is likely to allow half a dozen more agricultural products from Bangladesh into its market as it recently started the process, officials said.

The products are: potato, mango, jackfruit, guava, soy flour and fragrant rice.

Currently, Bangladesh exports agricultural products such as vegetables, fruits, nutty food preparations, cereals, flour, starch, dairy preparations and products, edible fruits, nuts, citrus peel, melons, etc.

In July last year, the Bangladeshi Embassy in Beijing requested the Animal and Plant Quarantine Department of the General Administration of China Customs (GACC) to allow the items to be exported.

In response, the GACC requested detailed information on the items in accordance with access procedures for inspection and quarantine of agricultural products, the officials said.

It also added a questionnaire on the information required for pest risk analysis before allowing any agricultural product to be imported into China.

Further, the GACC requested to mark the priority sequence of the six agricultural commodities so that a risk analysis based on Bangladesh’s commodity priority can be deduced.

In a recent letter to the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE), embassy officials requested comments on the GACC questionnaire as well as the priority sequence of agricultural products “to develop our exports of agricultural products to China. “.

China has already provided duty-free access facilities for Bangladeshi products, which account for almost 98% of China’s total tariff line.

Trade officials believed the facilities should help Bangladesh increase its exports to China if exporters can meet standard requirements and compete with Chinese products.

When contacted, DAE Director General Benojir Alam told the FE that agricultural products from Bangladesh have huge export potentials to China and other major destinations.

“We export agricultural products by properly checking through our accredited laboratory,” he said.

If China allows the entry of items from Bangladesh, “we will be able to maintain the required standard,” he said.

Mr. Alam said the capacity of Central Packaging House, Shyampur is being expanded and upgraded as part of an ongoing project.

He added that the government has allocated two acres of land at Purbachal, Narayanganj, where a laboratory and packing plant will be set up with the help of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).

The new lab will significantly improve testing and packaging capacity to facilitate the export of agricultural products, Alam noted.

Bangladesh produces about 10 million tons of potatoes annually, of which 2.0 million tons remain surplus after meeting local demand. In the 2020-2021 financial year, the country exported 64,773 tons of potatoes to countries like Malaysia, Sri Lanka and Singapore.

The data showed that by exporting agricultural products, Bangladesh now earns around $1.0 billion a year. Vegetables are exported to nearly 50 countries, including the European Union, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong and Singapore.

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