Government foreign currency restrictions prevent the export of pistachios of Iran
According to Keinia, citing Iran Pistachio Association, from the beginning of October to the end of December 2022, from the total stock of 121 thousand tons of available pistachios, equivalent to 30 thousand tons have been consumed; Out of this amount, 26 thousand tons of dry pistachios equivalent in shell were exported and it is estimated that 4 thousand tons of pistachios were sold inside Iran.
Iran’s pistachio export volume during the first three months of the crop year 2022-2023 is about 21% of the estimated stock at the beginning of the year. The share of exports in the same period of last year was 37% of the balance of the first year. The share of exports in the third quarter of this year shows a decrease of 16% compared to the previous year in the same period.
Despite the relative adjustment of prices in the market following the increase in the dollar rate and improvement in demand from foreign customers, the supply of pistachios from Iran is still limited; The sharp difference between the exchange rate of Nimai and the free market has prevented the exporters from doing anything serious.
The balance of Iran’s pistachio crop at the end of December 2022, after deducting the estimate of domestic consumption and the amount of export, is estimated at 91 thousand tons.
The foreign currency locally known as NIMA, which generally has a lower rate than the free market currency, can only be received through the Nima system and under special terms and conditions, and only by legal importers who have gone through the stages and steps determined by the Central Bank. In fact, this currency is only for importers of permitted consumer goods. Is. The source of currency in this system is the currency from exports, which is paid to the exporters at the Nima rate and through authorized exchanges acting as brokers, so this currency is not accessible to the general public and it is possible to receive and use it for personal use. It is not possible. It is compared to free currency, which can be obtained through brokers or some exchanges and other authorities, and has a much higher rate than fiat currency and can be used for all personal expenses of the buyer.
70% of nuts exports have been lost and we have lost 80% of markets
The production of all kinds of horticultural products has been facing fluctuations in recent years when gardeners are dealing with the water crisis on the one hand, and on the other hand due to various pests and diseases and the high cost of agricultural pesticides, their production has been reduced. However, the situation is still good in the matter of nuts production, which consists of garden products such as pistachios, raisins, dates, almonds and other garden products. However, in the discussion of export markets, the exporters of this sector are facing problems this year, and this has caused the export in this sector to not be the same as before.
So that the head of Iran nuts exporters’ union announces the closure of the export of these products for 6 months and says that due to the dispute we have with the central bank, during the last six months, the export of nuts has reached almost zero. Nevertheless, he hopes that with Mr Farzin, the new head of the central bank, the exporters of this sector will be able to resolve this dispute and resume exports.
The head of Iran nuts exporters union says about the details of the dispute between this trade and the Central Bank: As you know, in this area, exporters buy products from gardeners based on the free market dollar and then export the purchased goods. After 4-5 months, when the money is received, the central bank says that you should give it to the Nima system, in the situation that now the difference between free and Nimai is much, it is not possible for the exporter to afford so they have stopped exporting.
He pointed out: Currently, people who have a one-time business card issue and receive its currency, and no organization or institution can track them to fulfill the foreign exchange obligation, but the exporters of this export sector have stopped In this way, from last year until now, almost 70% of nuts exports have fallen asleep, and currently we have lost almost 80% of export markets. The main markets that we have been present in before now are European countries.
Remove the foreign exchange agreement from agricultural goods and nuts so that exports can resume
Regarding the impact of the lack of nuts exports on the domestic market, he says: As you know, the so-called 45% inflation announced by the Central Bank was on all products and goods and was not limited to nuts. So that now even the inflation of onions and potatoes is higher than that of nuts and as a result of this inflation, the prices have increased. On the other hand, it is not profitable for the farmer because the cost of production is high and he has to pay higher costs for the production of the same products than in previous years. Therefore, it is not possible to insist the farmer to sell his product cheaper, and finally, when the product is not bought by the exporters, it remains and reduces the production the next year.
In response to the question of whether the reduction of Iran’s nuts shipments to export markets has an effect on global prices, he says: No, because we are not the only exporter in this area and we have strong competitors. For example, now the United States produces 4 to 5 times more pistachios than us and supplies the world markets. Also, Turkey easily supplies the raisins required by the world markets, and the Arab countries are the main players in the field and supply the market well.
He continued: The problem is that international buyers who don’t wait for us to offer the product to the market, but easily buy the products of other countries even at lower rates. In fact, our place is easily taken by other prominent producers in the field of dry fruits, and it will definitely be difficult to regain these markets.
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