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Argentinean poultry exports ‘collapse’

Compared to 2019, the export of poultry meat from Argentina dropped 44% due to high duties. The results of Argentinean poultry sector move in the opposite direction of initial projections for this year.
Argentina’s government adds 9% taxes on poultry exports, causing a severe drop in volume. Photo: ANP
Argentina’s government adds 9% taxes on poultry exports, causing a severe drop in volume. Photo: ANP

According to the Center for Poultry Processing Companies (CEPA), exports were down 8.3% in volume and 4.5% in value between January and August 2021 in comparison to 2020. The step back does not look so alarming, but some leaders in Argentina already talk about a “collapse” due to political interference. This word looks exaggerated but make more sense when comparing current numbers with 2019.

44% drop in exports

Just 2 years ago, Argentina exported 275,000 tonnes during the same time. In other words, they exported 44% less this year. Roberto Domenech, president of CEPA, said the sector has abandoned the initial forecast for 2021. “The reality is that we had to dismantle everything and re-adapt. For the moment, we rather focus on the domestic market due to all the problems here,” explained Domenech.

Monumentally expensive export costs

He classifies export costs in Argentina as “monumentally expensive” and explains that the loading prices for a container is US$ 86.58, which means between 5% and 6.5% of the value of the product.

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In addition, Argentina´s government adds taxes of 9% that weigh on the activity. After all, some companies belonging to the chamber decided to export 30% less this year. As a result, they asked the national government to reduce duties but, for the moment, the Ministry of Economy is not willing to make any concessions. “We do not ask for preferential or special treatment,” argued Domenech.