Banana Export from Myanmar to China Encounters Obstacles

Banana Export from Myanmar to China Encounters Obstacles

This is the time of the year when Chinese banana production areas change shift. The production seasons in Yunnan and Hainan are nearly over and their supply volumes are limited. The price in these two major production areas is steady, and in Hainan the price is even relatively high. Some of the top-quality bananas sell for as much as 4.8 yuan [0.74 USD] per kg. Hainan currently supplies around 20% of the Chinese banana market. At the same time, the production seasons in Guangdong and Guangxi have only just begun.

“Although Yunnan and Hainan are both in the last phase of the production season, the price in Yunnan is much lower, around 3-3.5 yuan [0.46-0.54 USD] per kg. The distance between the prices in Yunnan and Hainan stems from differences in product variety and product quality. They are also influenced by the overall supply volume in the Chinese banana market. The supply volume of Yunnan bananas is 3.5-4 times larger than the supply volume of Hainan bananas. This puts pressure on the price of Yunnan bananas,” said Mr. Huang, spokesperson for the Guangdong Suixi Lingcha Specialized Banana Plantation Cooperation.

When asked about the market conditions for bananas from Guangdong and Guangxi, Mr. Huang replied: “The opening of the production season in these two provinces was quite stable. The price is slightly higher in Guangxi. The season in Guangdong began a month later than usual because the production areas suffered from unexpected frost last winter. Current conditions are quite good for bananas from Guangdong because their product quality is good and the price is better than last season. The peak period of banana supply from Guangdong is expected to fall in August.”

Most of the import bananas currently in the Chinese market come from Laos and Myanmar. The banana production season in Laos is nearly over, and their supply volume is limited, which means their price is relatively high and stable at the moment. “The price for top-quality bananas from Laos is currently more than 5 yuan [0.77 USD] per kg. Sales are smooth. The conditions are not the same for bananas from Myanmar. Their price is very unstable at the moment. The main reason for this development is the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Production areas in Myanmar have difficulty distributing their bananas. Border ports in particular form obstacles as many of them have closed. Distribution has slowed down significantly. In some border ports traffic has come to a complete standstill, which is harmful for the bananas that easily spoil. Some of the Myanmar bananas that do reach the Chinese market are of subpar quality. This will of course affect their price. That is why importers of bananas from Myanmar are being extremely careful this year.”