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How the Banana Disease Could Affect Guatemala’s Export Activity

19.7.2019

The importance of the protection measures is due to the fact that banana exports up to last May ranked second among the products with the highest volume of export sales, with more than US $ 360 million of the 25 main exportable goods and in 2018 it represented 7% of the total exports.

The actions consist of redoubling the alerts for products coming in from Colombia, as well as additional checks for passengers whose origin is Panama and a temporary suspension of the importation of all kind of plants.

These are some of the most drastic measures that have been adopted, after a suspicious case was detected in plantations in the Guajira, Colombia last weekend which has activated the alerts.

The main areas of banana and plantain production are in Escuintla and Boca Costa, where prevention actions have been implemented between the public and private sectors.

In addition, the import of vegetative products from countries with suspected outbreak was temporarily suspended.

Julio Mérida, executive director of the Association of Banana Producers (Apib) and Carla Caballeros, executive director of the Chamber of Agriculture (Camagro), said that the quarantine is intended to stop the entry of the pathogen, considered one of the most voracious for the banana and plantain sectors because it spreads easily.

Apib’s banana plantations are about 20,000 hectares, but the total area of cultivation is 35,000 hectares and up to May they had exported US $ 368 million with a growth of 13% in relation to the same period of last year.

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