TUNISIA – The Tunisian Trade Office (OTC) has announced plans to import nearly 2,000 tons of bananas from Egypt in a strategic move to diversify fruit supplies during the holy month of Ramadan.

The decision aims to ensure ample availability while keeping retail prices affordable, not exceeding TND 5 per unit.

Houssemeddine Touiti, the Director General of Competition and Economic Investigations at the Trade and Export Development Ministry, shed light on the initiative.

Touiti emphasized the significance of this approach, stating, “Tunisia opted for importing bananas from Egypt as part of an approach to diversify the fruit supply during the holy month.”

The move aligns with the country’s commitment to meeting consumer demands and maintaining stability in prices, especially during festive seasons.

Amid this initiative, the Tunisian market is set to receive a diverse range of fruits, including citrus fruits, which are expected to contribute significantly to the local market.

With an estimated production of 365,000 tonnes this season, the move reflects Tunisia’s proactive measures to ensure a well-rounded fruit supply during Ramadan.

This strategic decision comes on the heels of Tunisia witnessing a notable surge in fruit exports in the previous year.

According to Tunis Afrique Presse (TAP), fruit export volumes experienced a substantial 41% increase in 2022 compared to 2021. The figures rose from TND 133.81 million (€40.3 million) to TND 176.25 million (€53.1 million).

The total volume of fruit exports reached 68,443 tonnes by December 21, marking a significant boost from the previous year.

Libya emerged as the leading importer from Tunisia, witnessing an increase in volumes from 39,827 tonnes to 57,990 tonnes. Italy, France, and the UAE also featured prominently among the top importers.

Watermelons and peaches took the lead in Tunisia’s fruit exports, with watermelons accounting for 19,329 tonnes (TND 23.5 million) and peaches contributing 12,100 tonnes (TND 36 million).

However, the report highlighted a decrease in exports to Qatar, both in value (TND 4.6 million) and volume (418 tonnes) compared to the previous year.

Touiti expressed optimism about the strategic banana import plan, affirming, “The Tunisian Trade Office continues to explore avenues for diversified and strategic partnerships to meet the increasing demand for various fruits, ensuring a stable and robust supply chain.”

As Tunisia embraces these strategic moves, the nation showcases its commitment to sustainable and diverse fruit sourcing, ensuring the satisfaction of domestic consumers and meeting international market demands.

The import of bananas from Egypt aligns seamlessly with the country’s dynamic approach to addressing seasonal demand fluctuations and bolstering its position in the global fruit market.

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