Published: September 18, 2016

KARACHI: Exporters are worried about the higher valuation imposed by the Russian government on the import of kinno and potato from Pakistan.

They say the export of fruits and vegetables to Russia will increase immensely if the issue is resolved on an urgent basis.

In his letter to Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on Sept 10, All Pakistan Fruit and Vegetable Exporters, Importers andMerchants Association (PFVA) Chairman Waheed Ahmed said the import duty imposed by the Russian government on the Pakistani potato was 61 cents per kilogram during the last season while it was 48 cents per kilogram for the Egyptian potato.

The fair export cost-and-freight (C&F) value of the Pakistani potato was 36 cents per kilogram during the last season, he added.

Similarly, the fair export C&F value of the Pakistani kinno is 75 cents per kilogram whereas the Russian customs` valuation is higher than that. The kinno valuation by theRussian customs was 90 cents per kilogram from December to January and $1.05 per kilogram February onwards.

Mr Ahmed said exporters had to sell their products at cheaper rates due to the higher valuation. Besides a higher valuation, the duty is 8.75 per cent and value-added tax (VAT) is 18pc, he noted.

He informed the finance minister that the Russian customs values the Pakistani kinno against the Spanish and Moroccan kinno, which are highly priced. Kinno from Spain and Morocco is seedless and gives an impres-sive cosmetic look contrary to its Pakistani counterpart, which is neither seedless nor carries an impressive cosmetic look, he said.

Hence, its selling price in the Russian market is far lower: Moroccan and Spanish kinno is available in the range of $10-19 per 10kg whereas the Pakistani kinno sells for just $6.50-7.50 per 10kg.

Mr Ahmed said the kinno season is approaching and the government should take up the matter immediately to enhance the export of Pakistani fruits and vegetables to the Russian market.