Myanmar seeks new export markets for local cattle

Myanmar will seek new foreign markets to which it can export cattle, said Daw Tin Nwe Yee, a deputy director from the Livestock Breeding and Veterinary Department under the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation.

“We are working on exporting to India through Tamu-Moreh border trading point and will continue to legalise new routes,” she said during a workshop on cattle trade held in Nay Pyi Taw last week.

Even though Myanmar is a major cattle breeding country, exports were not allowed before last October, when permission was granted for cross border cattle trade. Demand has been on the rise since then though. Between December 2017 and 2018, a total of 332,238 cattle were exported, according to data provided during the workshop.

Most of the cattle were exported to China and the rest were exported to Thailand and Bangladesh, according to official figures. The Myanmar Times understands though, that hundreds of thousands of cattle are traded illegally at the Thai border and that the authorities are working on legalising more trade routes between the two countries.

The government is raising efforts to facilitate the export of cattle given that trade over the past 12 months has boosted the income of local farmers, provided more job opportunities and helped to alleviate debt levels.

“Since cattle exports were permitted, the price of a cow has gone up from K1,000,000 per head to K1,500,000 per head. This has helped farmers pay off debt and reduced poverty levels,” said Daw Tin Nwe Yee.

To ensure the sustainability of cattle exports, a breed-and-sell system is in the works between breeders and the government. “The industry is moving from a buy-and-sell system to a breed-and-sell system for more sustainable growth,” said Daw Tin Nwe Yee.

On a broader level, the government is also hoping to raise cattle exports to a more meaningful level so that the income generated can help reduce Myanmar’s trade deficit.

SOURCE: MYANMAR TIMES

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