ISLAMABAD, Sep 22 (APP): With the approval of the Global Indication Law by the Pakistan Parliament, the country’s Basmati rice is attracting potential global markets making entries into the Middle East, Europe, South East Asia, Africa, and Central Asian region.
Although the high quality and aromatic Basmati has been produced in the country for decades, it was being marketed by other countries with their nomenclature after import from Pakistan due to lack of GI tagging.
This tendency was not only affecting Pakistan’s export tendency but also sparing an opportunity for other countries to use other products to earn a good name for themselves by branding it as their own product.
Therefore, after this legislation, it is expected that Pakistan will have much rice stock in 2023 and its rice exports can go up to the highest level of US$3 billion. There is also the possibility that the government would ensure export of rice to new markets with its own branding.
In this way, Pakistan would hopefully emerge as the top exporter of rice to Central Asian countries besides securing a good space in Italian and many other European country’s markets.
Pakistan also exports rice to some other countries including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Afghanistan, Iran, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
Its demand is already increasing in Central Asian countries, especially Kazakhstan as this Central Asian state has lowered the tariff lines for Pakistani rice in its market where it was very difficult for Pakistani exporters to secure slots.
Meanwhile, the Ambassador of Azerbaijan to Pakistan Khazar Fahadyov also mentioned to opportunities for Pakistani rice exporters in Azerbaijan as he informed that rice exported from Pakistan to his country is exempted from 15 percent import customs duty.
Pakistan has a competitive edge in the global rice market due to its favorable climate and fertile land that enables the growers to produce high-quality rice while its strategic geographic location also provides easy access to international markets.
Pakistan’s rice market is a significant sector of the country’s agriculture industry, it is also one of the largest rice producers in the world and exports its rice to various international markets.
“This year we expect the rice export to cross US$ three billion that would be a record,” said Chairman Rice Exporters Association Chillaram Kewlani.
“Last year, floods destroyed the rice crop and dropped its export. But, this year rice production has improved and we hope to capture more markets.”
He said, “Rice exporters are facilitated by the government but due to the high tariffs in different countries, the exporters face some problems.”
“Therefore, certain understandings like Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) should be reached with importing countries.”
Kewlani also recommended including rice in the PTA so the tariff lines come down and have a positive impact on rice export.
“Improvement in exports would stabilize the currency rate as well as the economy as a whole,” he added.
Pakistan predominantly exports Basmati and non-Basmati rice. Its Basmati rice is well known for its unique aroma, long grains, and premium quality and is highly demanded in international markets.
The Pakistan rice industry adheres to strict quality control measures like proper drying, processing, and packaging to ensure that the exported rice meets international standards.
Former Chairman Rice Export Association of Pakistan Ali Hasan has underlined the need for exploring more markets for the export of Pakistani rice.
“We expect a good rice crop this year and need to explore new markets for export,” he added.
He however mentioned some problems like the cost of production, high tariffs, and other duties that he said needed to be addressed.
“If we desire to enhance rice exports, we would have to ensure better quality as well as favorable tariff regime to compete in the international market,” he stated.
He said, “Rice shall be included as an export product in FTAs so that the original potential of rice export can be achieved.”
“Despite its success, the Pakistan rice export market faces challenges like fluctuating global demand, competition with other rice-exporting countries, and issues related to logistics and infrastructure.”
“We are among the top rice exporters of the world and there is huge demand of its Basmati rice in ASEAN and Pacific Asia,” said a rice exporter Pir Syed Aoun Raza.
He said, “Countries like Vietnam and Thailand are ahead of us only by using modern farming techniques and technology.”
“If we also properly focus on this area, we can beat these countries because our Basmati has no match.”
He was hopeful to fully benefit from potential in Central Asian markets, especially Azerbaijan, and said, “Central Asian states provide ample export opportunities for our rice.”
The Pakistani government provides support and incentives to rice exporters through various policies and initiatives. This helps them boost rice exports and enhance the competitiveness of the industry.
Overall, the Pakistan rice export market holds significant potential and continues to expand, eying different world markets.
However, the country’s emphasis on producing high-quality rice and the government’s support to exporters can be the driving force for maximum gains by this sector.
APP/sha/maz (APP Feature Service)