Interview: Ethiopian coffee producers, exporters eye vast Chinese market

Source: Xinhua| 2018-11-03 17:21:43|Editor: xuxin
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ADDIS ABABA, Nov. 3 (Xinhua) -- Ethiopian coffee producers and exporters have expressed keen interest to penetrate the vast Chinese coffee market as the demand for coffee increased in China.

Amid the increasing demand for coffee among China's young population, the interest to penetrate the emerging Chinese coffee market has also become a major priority among Ethiopian coffee producers and exporters.

Alfoz Plc - one of the leading Ethiopian companies engaged in specialty coffee harvesting, processing and export - is one among the many aspiring Ethiopian companies who are vying to boost their presence in China.

"Presently, middle eastern countries are the prime export destinations for our coffee market," Yohanis Addis, Alfoz Plc. Sales and Marketing Manager, told Xinhua in a recent interview.

"As the interest from China for coffee in general and Ethiopian produced coffee in particular increased over the past few years, we are also looking for opportunities on how to better penetrate the market there in China," he said.

The company, which recently conducted a study concerning the potential of China's coffee market, stressed that "there is a vast coffee market and we are currently looking for opportunities on how best we would enter into this huge market," Addis added.

According to Addis, the increase in the demand for coffee is attributed to the younger population's shift from the traditional tea consumption trend to coffee, in which he said "Ethiopian coffee would be a major contender in the market if provided in good quality."

Addis also stressed that the timing of the upcoming China International Import Expo (CIIE), which is scheduled to be held from Nov. 5 to 10 in Shanghai, China, is "the perfect event for us to successfully interact with our Chinese counterparts as well as potential retailers."

"We believe the CIIE is an ideal opportunity for us to meet with potential Chinese counterparts who would collaborate with us in order to effectively penetrate in the vast Chinese market," he added.

Alfoz, which is set to dispatch a strong team headed by the company's owner and manager, also revealed that it has finalized its preparations in order to make its CIIE participation a success.

China is already the east African country's major export destination. Ethiopia, during the previous Ethiopian 2017-2018 fiscal year that ended on July 8, had exported 245 million U.S. dollars of goods to China, according to the Ethiopian Ministry of Trade.

Wondimu Filate, Head of Public Relations and Communication Affairs Office at the ministry, told Xinhua recently that Ethiopia's exports to China have steadily increased with the help of bilateral and multi-lateral ties as well as the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC).