Ban on egg exports to Middle East lifted

Pune, Jan 19 | Updated: Jan 20 2007, 06:10am hrs
The UAE government has lifted the ban on import of eggs from India to bring back some cheer into the Indian poultry industry. Saudi Arabia, which had banned the imports from India, has also lifted the ban a week ago. With this, the entire Middle East and Gulf region is now open for export of eggs from India.

UAE had banned import of eggs from India in February, 2006, following reports of bird flu. Dubai is the largest importer of eggs from India. Prior to the ban, about 70 - 75 lakh eggs were being exported every day to Dubai, mostly from Tamil Nadu. Other Gulf countries like Kuwait and Bahrain had not imposed a ban.

The National Egg Co-ordination Committee (NECC) has been pursuing with the government to lift the ban as India had got the bird flu-free status. Two delegations from the NECC visited Dubai and Abu Dhabi and met senior ministers and officials of the UAE government to convince them that lifting of the ban would not only benefit the Indian poultry farmers but also the consumers of UAE who had to pay a much higher price for eggs imported from Europe. They were paying about Rs 6-7 per egg.

The poultry farmers were worried about a possible crash in egg price, when summer sets in.