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New Markets for Lebanese Potatoes

Lebanon plans to open its struggling agriculture sector to lucrative European markets. Lebanese potatoes might enter the European markets, according to Agriculture Minister Hussein Hajj Hasan.

“We have made contacts with several European countries particularly the Eastern European markets, to export locally-produced potatoes," he said.

 

Lebanese farmers are allowed to export 50,000 tons of potatoes to EU countries, under the Euromed agreement, he added.

 

This might be good news for farmers who are currently searching for new niche markets to sell their produce, and can no longer depend on Arab Countries- the main importers- which have already started producing agricultural products.

 

 

The Minister pointed to a mechanism to import potatoes through prior import licenses and under the roof of the Greater Arab Free Trade Area, within the understanding made with Arab countries in particular Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

 

He stressed the importance of raising the quality of potatoes produced locally, renewing commitment to the standards of packaging, required by the importing countries.

 

In the past, Lebanese farmers were unprepared to enter the EU markets due to the difficulty of reaching the high standards of EU produce, and have received little support from Europe and the Lebanese Government.

 

 

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