Agro exports climb up to $4.5 bln as of 17 Sept

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Vegetable plants are thriving in farm

The agricultural exports have soared to US$4.536 billion as of 17 September of the current financial year 2020-2021 since 1 October 2020, despite the downward trend in other export groups amid the tightened coronavirus containment measures in the border and increase in container shipping cost.
The figures reflect an increase of $882 million this FY. The agro exports topped $3.65 billion in the corresponding period of the 2019-2020 FY, according to the trade figures released by the Ministry of Commerce. The agricultural exports surged even though the main trade partner China shut down all the borders in wake of COVID-19 surge in Myanmar. The coronavirus pandemic impacted the foreign demand for other export groups—agricultural products, fishery, livestock, mineral, forest products, finished industrial goods and other goods.
“The Kyat devaluation on US dollar will benefit the exporters. Yet, it will hike up the local food prices somehow,” a market analyst shared his opinion.
In the exports sector, the agricultural industry performed the best, accounting for 37 per cent of overall exports. The chief items of export in the agricultural sector are rice and broken rice, pulses and beans and maize. Fruits and vegetables, sesame, dried tea leaves, sugar, and other agro products are also shipped to other countries.
Myanmar agro products are primarily exported to China, Singapore, Malaysia, the Philippines, Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, and Sri Lanka. Sometimes, the export market remains uncertain due to unsteady global demand.
The country requires specific export plans for each agro products, as they are currently exported to external markets based upon supply and demand. The G to G pact also ensures the strong market for the farmers. Contract farming systems, involvement of regional and state agriculture departments, exporters, traders, and some grower groups, are required in order to meet production targets, the Agriculture Department stated. The Commerce Ministry is working to help farmers deal with challenges such as high input costs, procurement of pedigree seeds, high cultivation costs, and erratic weather conditions.—KK/GNLM

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