Bulgaria-China Business Forum

site.btaBulgaria-China Trade in Farm Produce and Foods Amounts to USD 640 Mln in 2023 - Minister Tahov

Bulgaria-China Trade in Farm Produce and Foods Amounts to USD 640 Mln in 2023 - Minister Tahov
Bulgaria-China Trade in Farm Produce and Foods Amounts to USD 640 Mln in 2023 - Minister Tahov
Agriculture and Food Minister Georgi Tahov (Photo: BTA/Ivona Velichkova)

Trade in farm produce and foods between Bulgaria and China amounted to USD 640 million in 2023, increasing by 37.4% compared with 2022. Bulgarian agricultural exports to China doubled, year on year, to USD 517 million, mainly owing to a considerable increase in maize and sunflower supplies, Agriculture and Food Minister Georgi Tahov told a Bulgaria-China Business Forum at Sofia's Hilton Hotel on Monday.

The event was organized by the Centre for the Promotion of Agricultural Cooperation between China and the Central and Eastern European Countries (CPAC China-CEE), functioning under the Bulgarian Ministry of Agriculture and Food.

Tahov said that 2023 farm imports from China to Bulgaria stood at USD 123 million, which was a decrease by 40% year on year, mainly due to lower supplies of fats not for human consumption, and rice. As a result, Bulgaria ran a surplus of USD 395 million in its agricultural trade with China in 2023, compared with a surplus of USD 52 million in 2022.

Bulgarian farm exports to the Chinese market in 2023 and the first quarter of 2024 were dominated by maize and sunflower oil cake, collectively accounting for 70% of the total. Farm imports from China to Bulgaria consisted mainly of animal and vegetable fats not for human consumption, rice and tobacco products.

The Bulgarian Ministry of Agriculture and Food, the Bulgarian Food Safety Agency and the General Administration of Customs of the People's Republic of China have worked hard over the last few years to complete the procedures for conformity of a number of Bulgarian agricultural and food products to Chinese import requirements, Tahov said. Thirty-four such procedures have been launched, and 11 of them have been completed with the signing of necessary protocols and approval of certificates by both sides.

"Completion of the remaining procedures will really create conditions for a significant increase in the volume and the range of Bulgarian agricultural and food products exported to China," the minister said.

He noted that Sofia has been cooperating successfully with Beijing in the "14 plus 1" format which includes countries of Central and Eastern Europe, and part of that cooperation is in the field of agriculture and food.

Established in 2015, CPAC China-CEE is an important instrument for cooperation in the field of agriculture and food, Tahov said. He also appreciates bilateral cooperation in agricultural science and technology.

CPAC China-CEE Director Momchil Stanishev said the Chinese guests in Sofia have a chance to learn about Bulgaria's advantages as an investment destination in various economic sectors.

He said that the ongoing Bulgaria-China Business Forum involves seven Chinese companies active in the automotive industry, artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, smart lighting, construction, trade exhibitions, food chains, customs service, and food import and export. According to Stanishev, CPAC China-CEE will continue to promote bilateral relations and to support small and medium-sized enterprises in this context. He believes that Bulgaria's economic cooperation with China does not have to depend on large and ostentatious projects; it can develop on the basis of small and sustainable undertakings instead.

/MY/

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By 04:34 on 14.07.2024 Today`s news

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