* Exporters hold DPP responsible for the shortfall, want govt to investigate the reasons
August 08, 2015
KARACHI: The exporters have shown grave concerns over the decline in mango exports to Iran despite significant increase in resources and facilities, and held the Department of Plant Protection (DPP) responsible for failure in the implementation of their own policies.
“Ironically, with 29 hot water treatment plants, this year exports to Iran are standing just over 11,000 metric tonnes and the mango season is nearing to an end. Last year, Pakistan had exported 13,000 MT mangoes to Iran with the help of only one hot water treatment plant,” said leading mango exporter and Durrani Associates CEO Babar Durrani.
He said that this year, the exports started early from 20th May and by June 17th it touched the figure of over 8,000MT, since then, the DPP only managed to clear 3,000MT mangoes for export to Iran because of wrong policies and operational inefficiencies. “This is an alarming situation and the DPP must be held accountable for this mismanagement,” he added.
He said that as per the rules, DPP would issue a Phyto for export consignment only after testing and certifying that the mangoes being exported are free of diseases. “This is like a visa for fruit and vegetable exports, thus any interception due to presence of fruit fly larvae or any disease proves the incompetence of DPP,” he added.
Durrani said that it clearly depicts the inefficiency of DPP, which with 29 hot water treatment plants at its disposal could not manage to touch even the exports figures of the last year.
“Exports to Iran should have been at least doubled with the help of 28 new plants. Interestingly, more than 8,000MT exports of this year also are done by only two treatment plants, which have been barred from exports to Iran due to personal grudge and vested interests of the DPP director general (DG) to benefit only two plants with stakes of the officials, violating the rules and regulations in this regard. If not for DPP DG personal grudge, the exports must have been much more than this,” added Babar.
Pakistan is already falling short by 30,000MT of its total export target this year. Although DPP announced extending the export period till October to appease the government and to hide their negligence but the facts are different from their claims, as the industry experts believe that the export would end by mid September.
DPP imposed a self-ban of 10 days on mango exports after one consignment of mangoes to Netherlands and two to UK, which were certified by DPP being cleared of fruit fly and 9 other diseases, were intercepted by the concerned authorities due to presence of fruit fly.
“One of the consignments belonged to a plant that has the backing of DG, but instead of banning the company from exports, the DG stopped all the mango exports for 10 days to every country, and ironically, the said company was banned from exporting to UK only,” said Babar, adding that the action was taken to save the interest of one plant but this further damaged the exports and ensured that we would fall short of meeting the set target of 100,000 MT exports for 2015.
“This is high time that the government should intervene and launch an investigation why DPP is making false claims, giving false reports to high ups and covering its negligence, inefficiencies and corruption,” he added.