Govt, industry challenge EU over unilateral ban on mango imports

Written by Sandip Das | New Delhi | Updated: May 2 2014, 03:28am hrs
The government as well as the industry on Wednesday criticised the European Union's decision to ban Indian mangoes from Thursday, and said such measures were restrictive as the country's products adhere to global standards.

A commerce ministry official told FE that after several months of discussions with the EU, it was agreed upon that India will commence from April 1 exports of mangoes to Europe only from 25 government-approved pack houses located mostly in Maharashtra.

We have registered our protest against the unilateral ban on mango exports as we have already worked out a new system of sending mangoes only through registered pack houses, the official said.

Sources said commerce ministry officials have taken up the issue strongly at the India-EU SPS-TBT (Sanitary and Phytosanitary and Technical Barriers to Trade) working group meeting, held in Brussels on Tuesday.

commerce ministry officials said the directorate of plant protection quarantine and storage and APEDA, had worked out a protocol for mango exports, which was to come into effect on April 1.

The EU should have monitored the consignment in the new season instead of putting a unilateral ban, the official said.

Meanwhile, Sidharth Birla, president, FICCI, in a statement said: This matter was under discussion for some time and it is therefore surprising that the EU has taken such a decision unilaterally. This defies the spirit of cooperation that one would expect.