The Ethiopian Meat and Dairy Industry Development Institute (EM- DIDI) said it has been working to secure over 12 million USD from meat exports to United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia during this Islamic fasting month of Ramadan.
Cognizant the demand for meat has shown a significant increase during Ramadan, the institute is striving to secure additional foreign currency by increasing volume of exports, Khalifa Hussein EMDIDI Deputy Director- General told The Ethiopian Herald.
He said, "We are increasing our normal operation of 1,500 tons of monthly meat export to Dubai and Saudi Arabian market to over 2,600 tons and set to obtain over 12 million USD in this fasting month. Ramadan's revenue is surpassed the non-fasting months amount by over three million USD."
Due consideration has been given to abattoir's capacity, livestock and transport availability while setting the target, said the Deputy Director General.
It was stated that agreements have been reached with Ethiopian Airlines and Fly Emirates to arrange additional flights to fresh meat exports during Ramadan.
The institute is working in concert with various stakeholders to maintain Ethiopia's leading position in delivering fresh goat and sheep meat to UAE and Saudi Arabian markets in improved quality and supply of slaughtered cattle as well as waging promotional activities in meat importing countries, Khalifa noted .
Stating a higher demand for goat meat in Ramadan could create shortages in the market, Khalifa noted that due attention has been given to ensure uninterrupted supply to Middle East.
" While investors have been supported and encouraged to involve in meat exporting sector, some abattoirs began owning their own animal fattening houses. Besides, attention has been given to enhance the link between animal suppliers and export abattoirs to supplement the possible shortage," he said.
Ethiopia secured 84.1 million USD during the last ten months of the current fiscal year from meat exports.
While UAE is the leading destination for Ethiopia's meat export with 60 percent share, Saudi Arabia has a share of 38 percent and the rest is exported to other Middle East countries, Herald learnt.