China is reportedly planning to boost vegetable exports to Russia and Central Asian nations, in a bit to offset declining demand and rising anti-dumping duties from traditional importing countries like the U.S. and South Korea.
Website Chinadaily.com.cn reported China Vegetable Association secretary-general Chai Liping claimed traditional markets had used tariffs barriers and harsh quality tests, as well as having withdrawn shipments without any adequate explanation.
To counter this, Shouguang, a major vegetable-growing city in East China's Shandong province, has decided to establish the Shouguang-Russia Border Trade Association to diversify export channels in global markets.
Northeast China's Heilongjiang province, which borders Russia, will also establish 20 vegetable-growing bases to produce carrot, onion, tomato, sugar beet, salad potato and bell pepper to develop border trade.
China's vegetable exports to traditional markets have confronted multiple pressure in recent years, according to Chinadaily.com.cn, including strict quota controls.
With Russia having banned fruit and vegetable imports from the EU and U.S. last year, Chai reportedly said the Chinese vegetable industry had been encouraged to export to its northern neighbor.
"The new projects in Heilongjiang will not only mark direct exports to Russia, but also help develop several logistics, distribution and price-setting hubs for exports of vegetables to Russia's Far East region where most land cannot produce vegetables or fruits due to cold weather conditions," Chai was quoted as saying.
Sales to Russia this year are expected to rise by 60% from last year to CNY2.1 billion (US$331 million). Exports to Russia reached CNY810 million (US$128 million) in the first half, a 24% year-on-year increase.
With a total export value of US$12.5 billion, China's vegetable exports amounted to 9.76 million metric tons (MT) in 2014.