Exports of Ukrainian food to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) fell by 19% in 2016, to $106 million, the Ukrainian Food Export Board (UFEB) has reported.
“In 2013-2015 revenue from food supplies to UAE fell from $165 million to $134 million, and in January-November 2016 we had $106 million. The trend is disappointing,” UFEB Director Bohdan Shapoval said.
UFEB said that in January-November 2016 Ukraine supplied food worth $105.5 million to the UAE, or 0.7% of total agricultural exports over the period. The key food delivered to the UAE was vegetable oil (50% of revenue), eggs (17%), grain (11%) and poultry (5%).
UFEB said that the share of dairy products was 1.6% of total revenue, which was the evidence of the unrealized potential in trade relations between the UAE and Ukraine, Shapoval said.
Exports of Ukrainian food to the UAE in the past years were falling and now its share of total revenue is less than 1%.
Shapoval said that the downward trend could worsen due to difficulties with halal certification felt in 2016 and seen again.
According to Ukraine’s State Service for Food Safety and Consumer Rights Protection, since February the UAE has applied new rules to monitor halal food sales. Thus, Ukrainian certification centers are to register at the UAE Standardization and Measurements Department. This could take a long time to do this when Ukrainian certificates will not be in effect. (Interfax/Business World Magazine)