EghtesadOnline: Imports of livestock and poultry feed saw a 5% decline in weight and a 7% decrease in value to reach 11.3 million tons worth $3.33 billion in nine months to Dec. 20.
A total of 7.23 million tons of corns worth $1.77 billion were imported over the period, indicating a 17% and 16% rise in weight and value year-on-year respectively, the news outlet of Iran Feed Grain Importers Union reported.
Iran imported 1.34 million tons of barley worth $326.83 million during the nine-month period, which registers a 47% and 49% decline in weight and value respectively compared with the corresponding period of the year before.
Imports of soybean meal stood at 1.1 million tons worth $461.74 million during the period under review. The figures show a year-on-year decrease of 17% and 21% in weight and value, respectively.
Imports of soybeans stood at 1.62 million tons worth $773.05 million, posting a decline of 13% in weight and 5% in value YOY.
“Problems regarding the supply of livestock and poultry feed have not yet been solved,” Majid Movafeq Qadirli, the head of Iran Feed Industry Association, said recently.
“If the government keeps pushing the current policy through, Iran will turn from the seventh largest producer of chicken to an importer in spring [starting late March]. The Central Bank of Iran has failed to allocate $1.65 billion for the import of such essential goods,” the official was quoted as saying by Mehr News Agency.
In December, Qadirli had said 2.4 million tons of corn have yet to be cleared from customs due to complications associated with the supply and transfer of foreign currency.
“Apart from chicken, we are also struggling with the supply of other meat products due to the trickling distribution system of livestock feed adopted by the Agriculture Ministry,” he added.
Abolhassan Khalili, the head of Livestock and Poultry Feed Importers Union, said unlike what most officials assume, money transfer is a much bigger problem than the amount of foreign currency allocated by the government, IRIB News reported.
“Transfer of foreign currencies other than the South Korean won, the Omani rial, the Iraqi dinar and the Pakistani rupee creates multiple challenges for importers,” he added.
The number of importers of livestock and poultry feed raw materials has decreased by 70% in the first half of the current Iranian year (March 20-Sept. 21).
According to Khalili, 403 companies were engaged in the import of livestock and poultry feed during the first half of the last Iranian year.