Oriental for Agriculture Products aims to increase its sales by 200% this year compared to last year’s sales, taking them to EGP 300m.
The chairperson of the company, said that the company is seeking to achieve a leap in its exports in 2018, especially, in Africa, Latin America, Canada, Hong Kong, China, and Singapore.
He added that the company achieved sales of EGP 100m last year, and seeks to double that amount to EGP 300m this year.
The chairperson explained that the sales increase will stem from the recent increase of the value of the Euro against the dollar, which supports Egyptian exports in the region, especially in terms of profits.
Meanwhile, the company has focused throughout the past season on exporting to the markets of Canada and Africa as new places, in addition to its regular regions, the chairperson pointed out.
The company exports Orange crops as main products, in addition to strawberry and grapes in the second place, and onions and pomegranates in later stages.
The region of Eastern Europe accounts for 50% of the company’s annual exports, while the countries of East Asia account for 25%, in addition to the exports to Kenya since 2017.
Opening china’s markets before the crop of grapes was a new start for other products to enter, such as citrus, which could enhance the entire system, the chairperson said, adding that Egyptian agricultural products are characterised by their high quality compared to the crops of rival countries, however, the mistakes of some exporters are the reason for banning Egyptian products in several countries. However, the issue is over, and the Egyptian products is now present in all Arab countries.
The chairperson also added that the lack of awareness among exporters of the consequences of export crises will impact the situation of Egyptian exports generally, that is why the Export Council of Agricultural Crops resorted to imposing harsh conditions on exporters.
The council, in cooperation with the Ministry of Agriculture and Haya Agricultural Development Association, has implemented a new system, starting with the crops of grapes, strawberry, and pepper. It aims to include various crops before the start of each production season.
The system works to register all the farms allowed to export and codify them, with the condition of issuing quality certificates to guarantee the work quality based on the requirements of foreign markets.
The chairperson explained that the European market reached a state of saturation, pushed by the inclination of the majority of Egyptian exporters towards it in light of the competition of the markets of Morocco, Spain, and Israel.
In terms of export development, the chairperson said that attending international exhibitions is a strong step towards identifying new clients and markets, which could make the company enter into products it has never traded before, adding, exhibitions allow companies to learn about new technologies used around the world, which could be beneficial for Egyptian exporters, saving some costs and meeting the various needs of consumers abroad.
He noted that liberalising exchange rates benefited companies with material gains, especially, that the price difference was huge after the local currency lost about 50% of its value against the dollar, however, at the end, that greatly increased the production cost.
“We have an issue with some air shipping companies, especially, that there is suspicion about monopolisation of transactions in some companies. These companies also deal with products based on their value rather than their weight or size. For example, shipping strawberry is a lot more expensive than shipping other fruits,” he said.
He added that some products, such as beans and strawberries, have no suitable and safe alternative except for air shipping. Shipping companies’ transactions have been costing companies a lot recently.
On the other hand, exports face a problem in dealing with EgyptAir in the hard currency, while foreign aviation companies deal with the Egyptian currency, which makes the transportation cost exceed the price of the product itself in some cases, he added, and explained that 50% of the company’s grape exports during last season were acquired by the markets of East Asia, especially, that the exportation season there is different from the exportation season in other countries.
Egypt has signed a cooperation protocol with China to export grapes and citrus only, and this is where it the dealing becomes difficult, as other markets accept more products, including Hong Kong, Indonesia, and Philippines, he pointed out.
He said that last year, the company exported 20 containers of grape to East Asian countries combined. The exports of the current season were estimated to reach 40 containers by the end of July. The company targets to take the number to 60 containers by the end of the season.