By: Nada Badawi
The US Department of Agriculture announced market access for the Egyptian government to export strawberries to the US.
US Ambassador to Egypt Anne Patterson announced the Department’s approval last Thursday, according to a statement she made on the website of the Egyptian Embassy in The United States.
“We are committed to continuing to work with the Egyptian authorities to increase market opportunities for Egyptian exports,” said Patterson.
“Increasing trade between our two countries is a key component of boosting employment and economic growth in Egypt,” she added.
The US is Egypt’s second largest global commercial partner after the European Union (EU). It is considered a primary importer of strawberries.
Commercial exchange between the two countries reached $8.5bn in 2011.
Egypt, the fourth largest producer of strawberries in the world, produced 240,000 tonnes of strawberries in 2010. The US Embassy valued strawberry production at $330m a year.
Granting Egypt access to the American market is “a testament to the high quality of Egyptian strawberry exports”, a statement read on the Egyptian Embassy’s website.
The statement further read that the trade will “stimulate production and exports for its already robust strawberry sector”.
The trade deal was concluded following a visit made by an Egyptian delegation to Washington in early February to explore and strengthen bilateral economic relations with American officials.
The delegation included a group of economic experts who discussed commercial exchange, investment, and information technology.
The Egyptian and American teams explored other economic opportunities such as increasing Egyptian exports to the US, the use of American expertise, and mechanisms of managing micro projects.