Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Palestine "Second Largest" Importer of Egyptian Foodstuff in Q1 of 2024

Thu 09 May 2024 | 02:06 AM
Rafah Crossing border
Rafah Crossing border
Taarek Refaat

Egypt exported processed foods worth $99 million to Palestine during the first quarter of this year (the period from January to the end of last March), an increase of 53%, year-on-year, according to estimates by the Export Council for Food Industries in Egypt.

According to the Council’s data, the Palestinian market accounted for about 6% of the total Egyptian food industry exports in the first quarter of 2024, which amounted to $1.6 billion. 

The list of countries that imported Egyptian food products in the first quarter witnessed a noticeable Arab dominance, as Saudi Arabia topped the list with a volume of exports amounting to $131 million, followed by Palestine with $99 million, then Libya with $83 million, and Sudan with $82 million, while the United States came in the fifth spot with $67 million.

The five countries accounted for more than a quarter of Egyptian food exports during the first quarter (29%), after they collectively imported products worth more than $470 million.

Exports to Arab countries topped the list of the most important international groups importing Egyptian manufactured foods during the first quarter of 2024, with a value of $859 million, representing 55% of total food exports, followed by the European Union, with a value of $331 million, representing 21% of total exports, then non-Arab African countries, with a value of $111 million, representing 7% of total exports.

Regarding the most important food commodities exported during the first quarter of 2024, flour and starch products topped the list with a value of $148 million, followed by soft drink concentrates with a value of $140 million, then frozen strawberries with a value of $103 million, and sugar with a value of $95 million.

In 2023, the Palestinian market ranked fifth among the countries that imported Egyptian manufactured foods, with a value of $230 million, representing about 4.5% of the sector’s total exports.

Executive Director of the Export Council for Food Industries, Mai Khairy, told Al Arabiya that the first three months of this year witnessed an increasing demand from the Palestinian market for Egyptian food products, which enjoy high confidence in neighboring markets.

“The Palestinian market does not depend solely on the aid received. We are not talking about Gaza only. There is intra-trade between Egypt and Palestine,” according to Khairy.

Khairy explained that the Food Industries Export Council is in the process of organizing bilateral meetings between Egyptian and Palestinian businessmen on the sidelines of an upcoming trade mission to Jordan in the period from May 10 to 13.

A Palestinian delegation, including 10 investors, visited Cairo in June 2023, to request an increase in Egyptian exports to their country of pharmaceutical, food, and cement products, and to present the investment opportunities available in 3 industrial cities in Gaza, Jericho, and Bethlehem. They invited Egyptian investors to visit their country to learn about these opportunities.