Tunisia requests EU to increase its olive oil export quota to 100 thousand tonnes
26/06/2020 18:10, TUNIS/Tunisia

(TAP) - Tunisia has officially asked the European Union (EU) to increase its olive oil export quota to 100 thousand tonnes, said CEO of the National Olive Oil Board (ONH), Chokri Bayoudh.

The ONH is negotiating with the EU since the quantity allocated to Tunisia is only 56,700 tonnes, Bayoudh added in a statement to TAP.

In this context, he considered these quantities to be very low, recalling that the agreement concluded between Tunisia and the EU dates back 20 years.

Tunisia has repeatedly requested the increase of its quota and the signature of a new agreement, especially after having recorded a growth of the national production of extra virgin olive oil, which reached this year a record of 350 thousand tonnes.

In spite of the exceptional conditions including the growth of production and the fall of prices at the world level, Tunisia has recorded a record of olive oil exports to reach 232 thousand tonnes, during the last 7 months (until the end of May), that is to say 1.4 billion dinars, in value.

Bayoudh added that Tunisia has been able to export, during the last 3 months, which coincide with the period of the COVID-19 crisis, a quantity higher than usual, about 45 thousand tonnes per month.

He said that these figures are explained by the good quality of Tunisian olive oil and the distinctions and awards obtained, adding that Tunisia can exceed the forecasts of the beginning of the season (export of 250 thousand tonnes).

About the disturbances recorded on the local market, Bayoudh recalled that the problems were solved through the intervention of the ONH through the purchase of oil and its storage from private individuals to ensure the control of production and the adjustment of prices.

He indicated that the quantities currently stored by private individuals are about 52 thousand tonnes of olive oil.

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