Readers’ Blog

Large Afghan pomegranate crop threatened by lack of markets, farmers say

Viewed 8593 times 2016-10-19 17:43 |Personal category:for discussion|System category:Others| farmers, country, fertile, quarter, trade

Large Afghan pomegranate crop threatened by lack of markets, farmers say

19 October 2016.

Farmers in Afghanistan's fertile south harvested a bumper crop of deep red pomegranates this year, but they say barriers to international trade in the landlocked country means much of their fruit may go to waste or be sold too cheaply.

The obstacles to fruit exporters, who accounted for more than a quarter of all Afghan exports in 2014, have posed a serious threat to one of the few functioning parts of Afghanistan's economy, struggling to emerge from decades of war.

Most of Afghanistan's pomegranates are exported to Pakistan, where prices are often low and where border crossings can be fickle.

Border problems between Afghanistan and Pakistan, which even saw exchanges of artillery fire earlier this year, have simmered for months, part of a longer running dispute over the frontier between the two neighbours that stretches decades.

Farmers in Afghanistan are pushing the government to help open access to new markets through Iran and other areas in the Middle East and southern Asia.

"The pomegranate harvest is much higher this year in Kandahar compared with past years, but we don't have access to good selling markets for this fruit," said farmer Zahir Jan. "We are demanding that the government helps find us a good foreign market in order to sell our product for a good price."

Haji Nasrullah Zahir, head of Kandahar's Chamber of Commerce, said there had been a 43 percent increase in pomegranate production in the province this year.

Government officials in Kabul acknowledge the lack of foreign markets, but say they are trying to find more international trading partners beyond Pakistan.

"The Afghan pomegranate is the best pomegranate in the region and attracts many countries that want to buy, but our problem is partnership," said Mir Zaman Popal, director of the government's export promotion department. "We are hoping to find partnerships very soon and the government is seriously working on this."

Afghanistan is often reliant on negotiating transportation agreements with its neighbours, but the government is exploring more air freight options, a more expensive but faster and potentially more politically possible solution, Popal said.

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)




Shake hands

Like 0 Share


Comment (0 comments)

facelist doodle Doodle board

You need to login to comment Login | register


Year of the Dragon starts on 23 January 2012. People born under the Dragon are passionate, brave and self-assured. At their best they are pioneering spirits; at their worst, they epitomize the old adage: Fools rush in where angels fear to tread. Dragons are generous with their resources, a tendency that at its most negative can reflect a foolhardy attitude towards money. But Dragons in general are blessed with good fortune. They are smart, enterprising and have a wicked sense of humor. They have a natural flair for fashion and are the people to consult if you want to catch up on the latest trends. This Chinese New Year 2012 ushers in the Water Dragon. Water exerts a calming influence on the Dragon’s innate fire. Water Dragons are more open to other people’s opinions than other Dragons which gives them the ability to channel their personal charisma into real leadership qualities. The Dragon and Love Dragons are passionate. They fall in love quickly – and out of love just as quickly. Their charisma and charm is an immense draw to people of the opposite sex whose attention and admiration they crave. Though they have a tendency to treat love like a game, they can settle down when they meet the right partner, someone who’s strong enough not to be bowled over by the Dragon’s flamboyant, independent and stubborn personality. The Dragon’s ideal partners are the Rat, the Monkey, and the Rooster: The Rat is practical, observant and resourceful, able to help the Dragon when extravagant promises have backed the Dragon into a corner. The Monkey is just as popular as the Dragon, curious, intellectual and fun-loving, one of the few personalities the Dragon doesn’t mind sharing the spotlight with. The Rooster can give the Dragon a run for the money on the fashion-forward front; attractive, well-groomed, fiercely loyal and committed to honesty, the Rooster serves as the Dragon’s reality check, keeping the Dragon from making promises that he or she can’t keep. The Dragon and Wealth Dragon years are lucky for anyone thinking of starting a business or initiating a new project of any sort because money is easier to come by for everyone, whether it’s earned, borrowed or received as a gift. Consequently we can expect the economic downturn to ease up a bit in the coming year. Fortunes can be made but they can also be lost: Keep in mind like all good things, the Year of the Dragon will come to an end and you will be held accountable for unreasonable extravagances. Dragons do well in professions that give them the ability to function somewhat autonomously. They make excellent sales people, publicists, political campaigners, lawyers, real estate brokers, actors and politicians. Yes, that's me.


Recent comments

Star blogger










Most Viewed

Most commented

Contact us:Tel: (86)010-84883548, Email:
Blog announcement:| We reserve the right, and you authorize us, to use content, including words, photos and videos, which you provide to our blog
platform, for non-profit purposes on China Daily media, comprising newspaper, website, iPad and other social media accounts.