RIYADH: RODOLFO C. ESTIMO | ARAB NEWS STAFF
Saudi Arabia is the world’s second biggest producer of different dates, producing 14.1 percent of world production in 2010. But only 6.8 percent of its production is marketed abroad. In this connection, the National Center for Palms & Dates participated recently in the Asia Fruit Logistica trade fair in Hong Kong with a five-member delegation. Headed by Abdullah F. Alyahya, an international marketing specialist, the NCPD showcased quality dates varieties from the Kingdom, according to Al-Ameen Al-Dalali, trade fairs head at the German Saudi Arabian Liaison Office for Economic Affairs (GESALO). The NCPD participation in the Asia Fruit Logistica, arranged through GESALO, was aimed to promote Saudi dates varieties in the Asian market as it has also been promoting the local fruit varieties in Europe through the Fruit Logistica in Berlin. On the occasion, Alyahya gave interviews to the local media, such as the Asia Fruit Magazine, about the founding of the NCPD and the development of dates production in the Kingdom. The NCP also participated in two business forums on new tools to give a competitive edge and persuasive packaging. The Asia Fruit Logistica is the major international exhibition center for fresh fruits and vegetables in the Asia-Pacific region with more than 4,100 buyers from 60 countries and 304 exhibitors from 30 different countries. “The Asia Fruit Logistica in Hong Kong presented an excellent overview of the market and made use of an opportunity to hustle up new business contacts,” Al-Dalali said.