Fruit prices hit by Syria crisis Transportation costs increase

KUWAIT CITY, Nov 24: Political crisis in Syria has spread its tentacles over the fruit and vegetable markets in Kuwait to the extent that the prices of these commodities have skyrocketed in Kabad and other sales outlets of cooperative societies, the private warehouses for fruits and vegetables, and other markets, reports Al-Rai daily.

The official in charge of the Fruit and Vegetable Warehouse Abdul-Hayy Ali said most of the fruits and vegetables are imported to the GCC countries from Syria.

Chillers
He added roughly 60 chillers formerly conveyed fruit and vegetables to Kuwait daily but the number has reduced to 30 chillers due to the crisis.
He stressed that consumers are direct recipients of the hike and the decision adopted by Saudi Arabian government to ban the export of potato, onion, melon and gourd has complicated the problem, indicating the prices of these commodities have risen by 30 percent.
He added the Turkish government has shut down an alternative route linking Syria, and explained that tomato, lemon, grape, apple and pear are normally imported from Turkey through Port Sa’eed in Egypt.

Commodities
Transporting commodities from Turkey through Egyptian ports used to cost $4,800 and now the cost has risen to $8500, he noted.
He also said the same problem in Syria has affected transportation of commodities through Lebanese routes.
One trader said the cost of transporting a ton of onion from Egypt has gone up from $90 to $130. He added a vehicle could carry a minimum of 30 tons and the cost of bringing down the commodities in the market is about KD 300.
He reiterated the cost of transporting commodities from Egypt to Kuwait is more expensive than Saudi Arabia and Syria, and the management of the markets raises the prices according to their whims.

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