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Decline in tomato exports from Morocco to Russia

Morocco has seen its tomato exports to Russia collapse over the past four years, reaching less than 36,000 tonnes in 2020. A figure three times lower than in 2016.

Morocco has lost its place as the leading supplier of tomatoes to Russia. The Russian Federation now imports less than 10% of its total tomato imports from the kingdom. There are several reasons for this underperformance. The anti-dumping investigation initiated by the Russian authorities, under pressure from the Russian National Union of Fruit and Vegetable Producers, whose members are losing competitiveness year after year. Russia had also put in place substantial financial subsidies to set up ultramodern tomato production units with the aim of achieving a national production of 500,000 tonnes (or 50% of the overall Russian market).

Another cause: the numerous calls by the Russian federal plant health surveillance service “Rosselkhoznadzor” to ban the import of Moroccan tomatoes because they are said to be carriers of the pepino mosaics virus. “Disguised protectionism” also explains the fall in Moroccan exports to Russia.

Morocco does not face the same situation with its four other main European markets. Its exports increased significantly over the same period: +6% to France, +153% to the United Kingdom, +102% to Spain and even +472% to the Netherlands.

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