Posted On 20 Jul 2017
Ecuadorian bananas do not need a cover letter. It has been the main non-oil export product for decades, but several problems prevent them from improving their performance in the quest to win markets. The executive president of the Association of Banana Exporters (AEBE) Eduardo Ledesma opens the discussion routes on what needs to be changed to increase the export of Ecuador’s flagship product.
Q: On the one hand we lose ground in the United States and on the other, Brazil is still closed …
A: Ecuador reaches Russia and the European Union Ecuador, but with a disadvantage, because the country has to pay higher tariffs. We have grown up in the EU, and there is potential. What we are going to lose in the US will be redistributed to the EU. Another market that can save our bacon is Brazil, so we will continue to insist on commercializing our bananas there, we have raised to Comex the intervention of the WTO. The subject is purely political.
Q: To open the Brazilian bolt the route is the World Trade Organization (WTO) …
A: The Brazilian ambassador invited me to a meeting to discuss the issue. We already sent a container, and it arrived in perfect phytosanitary conditions, but there was an association that appealed. Although Brazil is a great producer, it is also a significant consumer and needs to consume more. Ecuador could sell between 100 thousand and 200 thousand boxes per week.
A: What has the current Government said about the WTO claim?
Q: Yes. The Deputy Minister of Foreign Trade Humberto Jiménez said yes because it is no longer worth discussing the phytosanitary issue as it is solved; If the Brazilian ambassador has called us and has agreed, it is because there is a great opportunity. We are not going to sell the Ecuadorian bananas at the same price as Brazil’s; we want it to be an elitist niche.
A: With a balance deficit Ecuador can apply retaliations to Brazil …
Q: That’s what we´re going to do. We have already spoken with Humberto Jiménez. We already have an agenda, and we have met twice. On Wednesday we will meet with the Comex to plan the actions. (I)