Taiwan to slash tariffs for NZ cherry exporters

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Taiwan to slash tariffs for NZ cherry exporters

Conditions for New Zealand cherry exporters in their top market will soon become much easier with Taiwan set to reduce tariffs on the fruit from 7.5% to zero on Dec. 1. cerezas_78453031 panorama 13

In a release, Summerfruit NZ chief executive Marie Dawkins said the tariff cut, which is part of a comprehensive deal reached between New Zealand and Taiwan in July, was welcome news for the industry.

"Taiwan is the most important market for New Zealand cherries with nearly 600,000 kgs (1,322,773lbs) exported there for the 2012-13 season, or approximately 41% of all cherry exports," she said.

"When you see that the next biggest market for New Zealand cherries is Thailand with 17%, you begin to understand the significance of the Taiwanese market."

The release said the timing of the announcement was slightly unexpected as earlier indications suggested the deal would come into effect in 2014. The first cherries under the zero-tariff arrangement are set to be exported in early December.

Dawkins mentioned the New Zealand cherry season was short and growers were in a good position to capitalize on opportunities provided by the change.

"Harvest of the first Marlborough cherries for export is about to begin and the season continues with the Central Otago harvest expected to finish by mid-February next year," she said.

Summerfruit Exporters Committee chairman Dean Astill said while it was hard to estimate the effect on volume the tariff removal would have, it would help promote the country's cherries in Taiwan.

Photo: www.shutterstock.com



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