KARACHI - In order to deal with the new restrictions imposed by European Union on imports of fruits/ vegetable mainly from India, the same is feared to be applied on imports from Pakistan, exporters here have proposed measures to the government.

Pakistan, exporting almost same quality of fruits, mainly mango to EU is needed to be more conscious to have a safe way of export in the highly valued markets.

According to the statement Pakistan Fruit and Vegetable Exporters, Importers and Merchant Association (PFVA), the only representative body of fruit/ vegetable exporters, has tabled its suggestions and proposals to the Ministry of National Food Security and Research (NFS&R) in a recently held meeting in the ministry.

The proposals made to Federal Secretary NFS&R in the stakeholders meeting are aimed in improving quality and standard of fruits/vegetables in the country through Research and Development (R&D) while making short and long term policies for redressal of issues related to exports.

The members of PFVA led by its spokesman and former Chairman Waheed Ahmed, has informed the ministry that precautionary measures are needed to be taken to avoid the possible restriction on Pakistani mango export to EU after the EU’s ban on imports from India.

It has been decided in the meeting that Hot Water Treatment would be made compulsory for export of mango to EU this year to ensure the absence of fruit flies in the fruit consignments. For that, the Quarantine Department will inspect the Hot Water Treatment facility in Punjab and there would be a complete ban on export of mango to EU without the said treatment.

Waheed Ahmed has stressed the ministry that the treatment facility existed in Karachi should be used effectively besides at least 50 percent reduction in charges of the treatment through subsidy is also much needed.  Presently there are three Hot Water Treatment Facilities in Karachi including two private and one common facility. These plants are internationally approved meeting their quarantine standards.

He informed that Pakistan exports at least 24000 Metric Tones annually to EU. The share in EU market is negligible but the access to the lucrative market is also needed to contain shares in others markets of the developed world.