Worldwide Hazelnut export - Georgia holds third place
10 July, 2014
Worldwide Hazelnut export - Georgia holds third place
In several months, the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (DCFTA) with the European Union will come into force. It implies free export of the Georgian agricultural and industrial production to the EU market.

We are interested in what kind of production is exported to the EU market and what will change for the local exporters as a result of DCFTA? In each issue, we will review each such product.
Recently, hazelnut industry has turned into a profitable business in
Georgia. Several private investors purchased plots in Guria, some planted hazelnut trees instead of tea plantations. Trees were planted also in Kakheti. There are about 50 local companies purchasing hazelnut from people and export it. Georgia produces 40-50 thousand tons every year.
Turkey is the biggest exporter of hazelnut in the world. It produces more than 500 000 ton nuts every year. Its export potential is greatest covering 75-80% of the world market. It’s safe to say, Turkey establishes the price on market, too. Italy occupies the second place, Georgia holds the third place and Azerbaijan is fourth in the list.
90% of Georgian hazelnut harvest is exported abroad. It is widely requested because of its unique taste, oil and size, but most Georgian farmers are nursing the trees with centuries old methods that are reflected on the harvest.
Aleksandre Motserelia, Head of Hazelnut Exporters Association: - Georgian hazelnut is not taxed while being exported to the EU market. There will be Turkish standard TS 30-75 –The EU also uses this standard and Georgian hazelnut is exported according to the standard too.
Mariam Gabunia, the Deputy Head of Foreign Trade Department of the Ministry of Economy: - Georgia already takes advantage of tariff liberalization from the EU. Georgia uses the ‘’GSP+” standard, which implies zero tariffs. Therefore, nothing will change in terms of taxation, but we should consider that ‘’GSP+” is a temporary regulation and DCFTA will be permanent.
P.S. In July, 2005, Georgia became one of those 15 countries having the GST+ status. It means it is allowed to export 7200 kinds of production for free to the EU. 9 years have passed but the list of our products exported to the EU is less than 20…

Export Increases

Foreign trade of Georgia was 2,879 billion USD with the EU countries. This is 27% of the whole foreign trade and exceeds the previous year’s rate with 3%. Export to the EU has increased with 72% and became 608 million USD, i.e. 21% of the whole export.
The agricultural product of 183 million USD was exported to the EU – exceeding the previous-year’s rate with 73% and the industrial production was 425 million – more with 72%.

Hazelnut - a leader

Hazelnut is a leader product among those exported to the EU. For example, in 2013, an export worth 116,4 billion USD was provided to the EU market in 2013. The basic export markets are: Germany (41%), Italy (16%), Czech Republic (&,6%), Belgium (6%) and France (5%).

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