Pakistan’s pine nuts exports to China to double this year
“Now the flight from Lahore to Kunming has been loaded with pine nuts. Such air freight service generally lasts five months, from the end of September to the February of next year. Last year, we shipped 2,000 tons of pine nuts from Pakistan to China, and we expect the amount to reach 3,000-5,000 tons this year, doubling from that of last year,” said Wu Qingtao, the sales director of the aviation management department of YTO Express (International) Holdings Ltd, in an interview with China Economic Net at the ongoing fifth China International Import Expo (CIIE) in Shanghai.
Up to now, YTO Cargo Airlines has launched two routes – Kunming-Karachi Air Cargo Route and Kunming-Lahore Air Cargo Route, with four flights each week per route, totaling eight flights.
Pine nuts are mainly transported via Kunming-Lahore Air Cargo Route in this season. According to the official data of the General Administration of Customs of China (GACC), in the first nine months of 2022, China imported a total of 4,290 tons of pine nuts in shell (HS: 08029100) from Pakistan worth USD 47.69 million, over five times the value of fresh or dried nuts (HS: 0802 – fresh or dried nuts) exported to China in 2018, which was USD 9.5 million.
The increase of pine nut export is closely related to aviation convenience. “This route has been used to transport pine nuts for two years. An industrial chain from Pakistani farmers to Chinese buyers, an one-stop service from pine nut producing areas to Chinese processing places, has been built. After Pakistan’s raw materials are shipped to China, they are transported to Zhejiang for processing,” said Wu.
Fresh green crabs are primarily delivered via Kunming-Karachi Air Cargo Route. According to Wu Qingtao, the transportation of green crabs has been operated for three years, and China’s main market for green crabs is Shanghai. “Shanghai has a great demand for green crabs, especially in the peak season, sometimes the demand can’t be met,” he added.
GACC data showed that in the first nine months of 2022, China imported 2,728 tons of other live, fresh or cold hairy crabs from Pakistan (HS: 03063399), an increase of nearly 60% compared with 1,815 tons in 2018.
So how do they ensure the freshness of green crabs when the journey from Karachi to Shanghai is more than 5,000 kilometers? Wu Qingtao told CEN that for the survival rate of green crabs, the whole chain, from crab fishing ground in Karachi to Shanghai seafood wholesale market, should be done within 48 hours.” In other words, it takes within 48 hours to finish the whole process from air freight at Karachi Airport, import customs clearance in China’s Kunming, to the destination of wholesale market in Shanghai, to ensure the survival rate.
Furthermore, Wu shared some experience on how to create an advantages in the fierce competition of international logistics. He said they focus on the whole process and provide customers with full-process solution from departure places to customers, not limited to air service.
Previously, Chinese tents, blankets, biscuits and other materials have been delivered to Pakistan by YTO. “After receiving demand, we provide immediate response and give priority to transporting these materials to Pakistan,” Wu Qingtao said.