China’s General Administration of Customs (GACC) has granted approval to sixty additional cherry orchards in Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan, to export cherries to China, as announced by Commercial Counsellor Ghulam Qadir at the Pakistani Embassy in Beijing on Friday.
This development is expected to have a significant impact on the agricultural sector in Gilgit Baltistan, where cherry cultivation plays a prominent role in the local economy.
According to Ghulam Qadir, the approval by Chinese customs is a testament to the high quality of Pakistani cherries and their compliance with the required standards and regulations for export to China. This milestone not only opens up new trade opportunities but also showcases the exceptional taste and quality of Pakistani cherries to a broader international market.
Arman Shah, CEO of Hashwani Group and Arman Shah Farm, the largest farm approved by Chinese Customs, highlighted the mutual benefits derived from the collaboration between China and Pakistan in promoting agricultural exports, particularly cherries from Gilgit Baltistan. This partnership is expected to foster economic growth and further strengthen bilateral ties between the two nations.
Shah also revealed that Gilgit Baltistan cherries have already found markets in other countries, with the Middle East being a major destination. This year, the export prices ranged between Rs. 700 to Rs. 1000 per kg.
With Gilgit Baltistan producing over 4,000 tons of high-quality cherries each season, Shah’s 7.5-acre farm alone produces around 15 to 20 tons. Additionally, he boasts a cold storage facility that enables cherry exports even beyond the peak season.
The approval of fifteen cold storage and packing facilities by Chinese customs further enhances the potential for cherries to be exported to China from Pakistan.
This momentous development is seen as a step towards strengthening trade relations between China and Pakistan, solidifying the reputation of Gilgit Baltistan as a reliable source of top-notch produce. The approved cherry orchards and related facilities are expected to contribute significantly to the export of Pakistani cherries and bolster the economic growth of the region.