Author Topic: Shipment delays please everyone except greedy whinging exporters. 26.3.12  (Read 872 times)

WA Export News

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Shipment delays please everyone except greedy whinging exporters. 26.3.12
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2012, 09:48:14 AM »
Government process adds to live export woes.

 LIVE exporters have moved quickly to implement the new Export Supply Chain Assurance Scheme (ESCAS) to Middle Eastern markets but it has come with massive costs to the WA industry.

There have been no shipments from WA to Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar or Turkey in the last three weeks, leaving some of WA's biggest live export markets and producers in limbo.

WA Live Exporters Association (WALEA) chairman John Edwards said live exporters had warned the Federal Government that this would happen and had asked for a transition period before ESCAS implementation.

"There has been no ESCAS approval for overseas markets as exporters are still undertaking in-market work getting in place systems to meet the Federal Government's requirements," Mr Edwards said.

"The road blocks presently being confronted by industry in this process were all made abundantly clear by industry to the government in last year's Industry Government Working Group (IGWG) deliberations, its submission to the Farmer inquiry and ongoing consultations to date."

Mr Edwards said it had been a frustrating process given the time-lines set by government and the steep learning curve it had been for overseas customers.

He said exporters' efforts in delivery and facilitation had been governed by the willingness of importers and in-country governments to take on the ESCAS.

"This is a not a slight on our customers' preparedness or ability to engage and adopt, but a reminder that things just happen at a different pace in the Middle East and to push any harder would be seen as antagonising and inconsiderate," he said.

"While exporters are confident ESCAS will be delivered in Tranche 1 markets, the industry is currently on hold as most exporters are unable to even begin to prepare shipments.

"This is creating a real sense of real nervousness among WA producers."

Mr Edwards said the flow-on effects of the delay of shipments was growing each day exporters were out of the market.

He said commitments to vessels alone were costing tens of thousands of dollars each day.

"Industry has previously approached government with these concerns in an effort to enable the live trade to move through a far less disruptive transition into ESCAS," he said.

"Discretionary powers that the government has could have helped the trade avoid the current buying and shipping delays and more importantly shown our clients we are in fact serious about the continuity and viability of livestock exports from Australia to the Middle East.

"Unfortunately this has been to no avail."

He said the impact the disruption has had on the Australian livestock export industry could be felt for a long time.

"Live exporters are committed to the ESCAS implementation process throughout the Middle East," he said.

"And while it may help shore up the sustainability of the trade out of Australia, the economic consequences long term in the face of lost market share, reduced trade volumes and higher costs must not be overlooked."

Exporters are also working on Tranche 2 markets which include Israel, Japan, Jordan, Malaysia, Oman, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Singapore and United Arab Emirates, which need to be compliant by September 1.

26 Mar, 2012