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Sudan halts fruit, vegetables imports from Egypt

Staff Writer |
Sudan is temporarily suspending all imports of vegetables, fruit and fish from Egypt until laboratory tests are performed to ensure they are fit for public consumption.

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According to the statement the Ministry of Commerce, the decision is well within “the acquired rights of national sovereignty and international legislation which allows measures to protect human and animal health in the country.”

Some media reports have speculated that the decision to suspend the import of Egyptian products is due to earlier cases of strawberries from Egypt causing chronic hepatitis and other diseases. But Reuters says it is unclear why Sudan has suspended the imports.

Russia, along with the UAE, has also threatened Egypt with a temporary ban on its exports of fruit and vegetables, a move that appeared to be a response to Cairo rejecting Russian wheat under its zero tolerance of a common grain fungus.

"The suspension of imports of fruits and vegetables from Egypt is a temporary measure after several countries have done the same due to safety concerns," said a trade ministry source. "The resumption of imports is subject to the lab test results."

Egypt and Sudan enjoy a volume of trade that currently stands at $900 million, according to the Ministry of Trade and Industry last year.

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