Tajikistan agreed to supply Kazakhstan with additional volumes of onions during the off-season, QazMonitor reports.
Vice-Minister of Trade and Integration Arman Shakkaliyev met with the head of the Export Agency under the Government of Tajikistan Bahriddin Sirojiddinzoda, First Deputy Minister of Economic Development and Trade of Tajikistan Ashurba Solekhzoda, and Deputy Minister of Agriculture of Tajikistan Nigina Anvari.
The parties discussed providing the Kazakh market with staple fruits and vegetable products during the spring season when vegetable stocks are low.
In January, Tajikistan signed the first deal that guaranteed the export of 6,000 tons of the mid-April harvest to Kazakhstan. But seems not enough to satisfy the market demand.
Deputy Prime Minister - Minister of Trade and Integration Serik Zhumangarin said that Kazakhstan will have enough onions for domestic supply until April. From then on, agricultural products will have to be imported from other countries.
The Kazakh government introduced a three-month export ban on onions in January that will last until mid-April when Tajik onions are scheduled for import. Zhumangarin does not rule out the possibility that the onion shortage could be partially caused by unauthorized trade.
“There are suspicions that they are exported by ‘gray schemes’ out of Kazakhstan,” he said. “We are taking control of this situation so that there is a stable supply of onions for Kazakh consumers.”