China set to lift ban on PH banana exports
China is expected to lift the suspension on Philippine banana exports soon, the Agriculture Department said Thursday.
The department said Chinese Ambassador Zhao Jianhua, in courtesy call to Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol, relayed that China would lift the ban on Philippine banana exports to China.
China earlier imposed a ban on Philippine banana exports after the Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine revealed two notifications on non-compliance.
ASQIQ of China notified the detection of the pest Dysmicoccus neobrevipes in a shipment of 20,790 kilograms of bananas made by NKM Import/Export Inc. to Dalian Kawoo Import and Export Co. Ltd.
Another shipment made by Sumifru to Shenzen Everglory Trading Co. Ltd. had carbendazim level which exceeded the maximum residue level of 0.1 mg/kg, it said.
The Agriculture Department said as of June 28, 2016, 27 Philippine exporters were suspended by ASQIQ.
The agency said of the total number of suspended exporters, 10 already submitted their corrective actions which were verified by the Bureau of Plant Industry and were forwarded to ASQIQ to request for the lifting of suspension.
These companies included Sumifru, Banana Brothers Inc., Evita Banana Trading Company Inc., Nader and Ibrahim S/O Hassan Phils. Inc., Tagum Agricultural Development Trade Co. Inc., TVEM Links International Co., Stanfilco Division of Dole Philippines Inc., Philpack, Continental Farm Corp. and Lapanday Diversified Products Corp.
The Agriculture Department said ASQIQ recently sent an inspection team to the Philippines to evaluate the corrective measures being implemented by the exporters.
Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said the lifting of suspension would greatly benefit the country’s banana exporters.
“We appreciate very much the action of the Chinese government as this will relieve our banana farmers from the serious problem during the suspension considering that China is a huge market for our banana industry,” Piñol said.
The Agriculture Department said aside from banana, China also expressed interest to import other agricultural products from the country.
“The [Chinese] ambassador mentioned that President [Rodrigo Duterte] requested if agriculture exports to China can be increased,” the agency said.
The department quoted Zhao as saying that China was interested in the country’s pineapples, mangoes, coconut and dragon fruit.
China also expressed interest to import high-end fishery products such as Lapu-lapu, crab, shrimp, prawns, tuna and low-end fish products such as bangus.
“The said products are intended to be sold in the major cities of China,” the agency said.