KARACHI - Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) Horticulture Exports Committee Regional Chairman Ahmad Jawad has said that mango exporters are disappointed from the airlines due to high rates of air cargo which would be a big hurdle to tap the international market on competitive rates.

He said that more than 50 percent Pakistani mangoes are shipped by air for the purpose of export due to its small shelf life, and if the airlines continue to increase their rates every year than it would not be possible to continue sell mangoes to high value markets.

He quoted an example that from Karachi to London, airlines charged $1.72 per kg. Comparatively, from Bombay to London they charged $1.26 per kg. He also said that this year the country’s mango production also suffered due to long hail storms in South Punjab and unexpected climatic changes, which would suffer the export target as well. More or less this year Pakistani mango export would be around 80,000 tons by the end of this season, he added.

He said that, last year, export value of mangoes was stood $680 to $700 per metric ton. However, in the current season this value would be $650 per metric ton, he added. He urged that aviation ministry to form some mechanism in order to stream line the cargo rates of the airlines to facilitate fresh produce exports, similarly commerce ministry may form a mechanism that if any exporter may enter into the new market, then the government will give them a 15pc reimbursement on the invoice value to encourage the mango exporters as well encouraging the “Pakistan Brand” through the king of fruit.

He also requested the Punjab government to reserve funds in the budget to encounter the menace of climate changes during crop production. He said that the climatic changes are big challenge for the entire agriculture sector, including horticulture sector, and technology can be utilised to find appropriate solutions. With use of modern technology the damage caused by hail storms can be avoided and losses can be minimised, he added.