Kazakhstan lifts ban on pomegranates import from Uzbekistan

15 March 2019 15:13 (UTC+04:00)

By Abdul Kerimkhanov

Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan have agreed to strengthen phytosanitary control over imported and exported products.

Kazakhstan lifted restrictions on importing fresh pomegranate from Uzbekistan starting from March 14, according to the press service of the State Plant Quarantine Inspectorate under the Cabinet of Ministers of Uzbekistan.

Following the talks, Head of State Quarantine Inspectorate Ibrohim Ergashev with Deputy Minister of Agriculture of Kazakhstan Gulmira Isayeva and Deputy Chairman of the Committee of the State Inspection in the Agricultural Sector of the Kazakh Ministry of Agriculture Almabek Mars reached an agreement on lifting restrictions.

During the talks, the parties also discussed issues of strengthening cooperation between the quarantine services of Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, the quarantine phytosanitary situation in the two countries and control over the export and import of quarantine products.

Kazakhstan introduced a temporary ban on the import of Uzbek pomegranates into the republic on February 19. According to the Ministry of Agriculture of Kazakhstan, the reason was the identification of pests in pomegranate fruits, in particular, the Comstock worm.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture of Uzbekistan, the main export market for the Uzbek pomegranates is Russia.

Besides, the Uzbek pomegranate also comes to Russia due to re-export from Kazakhstan.

Earlier, Kazakhstan revealed two facts of the delivery from the territory of Uzbekistan of pomegranates infected with a quarantine object.

Worm colonies cause plants to dry out. With a strong infection, the fruits are stiffened, their taste deteriorates, and their weight decreases.

Diplomatic relations between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan were established on November 23, 1992.

Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan currently experience a rise in mutual economic ties. In January-June 2018, the trade turnover between the two countries increased by 52 percent, with Uzbek exports growth of 48 percent. Over 200 companies with Kazakh capital currently operate in Uzbekistan.

The countries agreed to take further measures to ensure the growth of trade turnover to $ 3 billion in 2018 and $ 5 billion by 2020. The countries also intend to increase the number of rail, bus and air communication between two states.

Kazakhstan exports to Uzbekistan petroleum and their products, the milling industry, grains, ferrous and non-ferrous metals, products of inorganic chemistry, food products.

Uzbekistan exports to Kazakhstan energy sources (gas), cotton fiber, chemical products and plastics, fertilizers, fruits and vegetables and other types of goods.

Uzbek investments in Kazakhstan for the past 10 years amounted to $ 31.3 million, half of which falls for 2016. Kazakh investments in Uzbekistan totalled $ 114.4 million in the past decade.

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Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94 

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