Domestic poultry headed to Saudi Arabia

Domestic poultry headed to Saudi Arabia

ANKARA - Anatolia News Agency
Domestic poultry headed to Saudi Arabia

A domestic poultry processing facility is seen in this file photo. AA photo

Saudi Arabia has lifted a 6-year-old ban on Turkish poultry imports, which was enacted after the outbreak of the bird flu epidemic in 2005, said Economy Minister Zafer Çağlayan. 

This opens the way for Turkish exporters to access the $1.3 billion poultry market in the Arabian kingdom, Çağlayan said. 

The ban was lifted for eight Turkish firms as a result of intense talks with the Saudi authorities, he said, adding that this would lend impetus to Turkish exporters. Saudi Arabia took a share of 5 percent (or $1.3 billion) in the global poultry imports market, which totaled $27 billion in 2010, he said. The country imported 675 tons of poultry.

“If Turkey gets a 5 percent share from the Saudi [poultry] market, this will increase Turkish poultry sectors’ overall exports by 20 percent,” he said.

Talks with the Saudi authorities continue in order to lift the ban for other Turkish firms, the minister said.
“Turkey is an important player in the poultry exports market. Total exports of Turkish poultry sector reached $352 million in January to November last year. Our largest markets are Iraq [63 percent], Hong-Kong [6 percent], Iran [5 percent], Vietnam [5 percent] and Libya [4 percent].”

Saudi Arabia meets a big part of its poultry needs from Brazil, said Yüce Canoler, Poultry Meat Producers and Breeders Association (BESD-BİR) secretary-general. 

“It takes 1.5 months for the products shipped from Brazil to Saudi Arabia. But it takes only a few days from Turkey. Brazilians were dominant in Iraq before. Iraqis saw the difference of [quality] between our products and the Brazilians’. The same shift will happen in Saudi Arabia, too,” Canoler said.