Zespri has made strides towards developing commercial trade ties with Iran.
The New Zealand single-desk kiwifruit marketer signed a statement of intent with Iran’s Ministry of Agriculture in Tehran earlier this week. The agreement acknowledges Iran’s potential as a large kiwifruit consuming and producing nation.
"Current import conditions mean that New Zealand is unable to export kiwifruit to Iran,” said New Zealand minister of primary industries, Nathan Guy, who witnessed the signing of the statement. “However the letter of intent outlines undertakings to further explore commercial opportunities in Iran."
Operating in a counter seasonal supply window to New Zealand, Guy said Iran has a well established kiwifruit industry, with large orchards and developed supply chains.
Guy also witnessed an agreement enabling the resumption of New Zealand sheep and beef exports to Iran, and took the opportunity to discuss an action plan for agricultural cooperation in the year ahead with Iranian minister of agriculture, Mahmoud Hojjati.
“This visit is an important opportunity to strengthen our agricultural relationship, following the signing of an Agricultural Cooperation Arrangement last year,” Guy added.
“Iran has traditionally been an important market for New Zealand agricultural exporters, particularly dairy, and this visit has identified areas in which we can diversify these commercial ties and further technical cooperation."