With an annual growth rate of close to 5%, Peru is one of the Latin American countries with the greatest international projection. Food exports represent its second largest generator of foreign currency and, the growth in commercial exchange with Asia in the fruit and vegetable sector has evolved positively in recent years.
Last year, Malaysia received fresh Peruvian products worth over USD12,000 million dollars, an exchange that represents over 2% of the Peruvian exports in Asia.
This figure, together with the great economic development which Malaysia has shown in the previous years – a GDP with a growth of 4.3% in 2019 – places Malaysia among the main economies in the region.
As a result of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), the Peruvian and Malaysian government continue discussing and moving forward on protocols and phytosanitary requirements to achieve market access for mangoes, avocados and pomegranates.
Cocoa and fresh grapes are the most imported Peruvian products by Malaysia, which also receives significant volumes of quinoa, sacha inchi oil and blueberries. Blueberry imports in particular went up by more than 75% in the first quarter of 2020.
According to Erick Aponte, Trade Commissioner of PROMPERÚ in Southeast Asia, Malaysia has become a major priority for Peruvian exports due to its great growth potential.
Since the end of 2018, Peru has been participating in the CPTPP which allows them to increase the number of Peruvian products with access to the market and they have been working on new protocols.
“During last year, we have been managing access for some fresh products, such as pomegranates, avocados and mangoes. The latter two are among the most imported fresh fruits by Malaysia and actually, they are the most recognised Peruvian products outside our borders,” the Trade Commissioner said.
Currently, mangoes accounts for 12% of fresh fruit imports into Malaysia, reaching a figure of over 62,000 tonnes. Avocado, another Peruvian fruit that is expected to gain access to the Malaysian market in the short term, has also continued to grow its presence in the Malaysian market, with more than 3,000 tonnes imported last year.
FOOD TRADE WITH ASIA
Asia currently accounts for 9% of all Peruvian agri-food exports worldwide. China is the biggest Asian market for Peruvian produce, with a 30% share of all exports, followed by Hong Kong (20%), South Korea (14%), Japan (12%) and Indonesia (8%). To a lesser extent, but growing strongly, are Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam and Singapore. PROMPERÚ’s trade office for South-East Asia is based in Hong Kong and works to increase the demand for Peruvian food. Opening new markets by establishing strategic partnerships, signing new export protocols, and engaging in tactical promotional campaigns targeting both retailers and consumers are some of its goals.