Pacific exporters have the potential to expand the sales of their agricultural products and achieve sustainable export market opportunities in Japan.
This was underscored during a recent virtual Japan Market Brief for exporters and stakeholders in the Pacific and facilitated by the Pacific Islands Centre (PIC) and the Pacific Horticultural and Agricultural Market Access Plus Program (PHAMA Plus).
The Brief, which was attended by PHAMA Plus partners and stakeholders from industry working groups, government agencies, business associations, provided insight into doing business in Japan, market opportunities, market access information and service offering for interested exporters.
“We’re pleased to work with a key trade and investment agency such as PIC to help our exporters and stakeholders in PHAMA Plus countries grow beyond traditional markets like Australia and New Zealand and harness opportunities in Japan,” PHAMA Plus Team Leader, Mr Andrew Piper said.
“Our mutual interests include supporting exporters, processors, manufacturers and producers to adopt quality and productivity-enhancing innovations for their exports to meet market requirements. This is key not only to economic growth in the Pacific but also recovery from the global COVID-19 pandemic.”
PIC and PHAMA Plus are forging closer engagement through an agreement to collaborate and strengthen the private sector in Pacific countries to achieve sustainable export market opportunities in Japan.
“Despite the severe constraints brought about by COVID-19, we continue to provide innovation and support virtually, and this collaboration is an added boost to our work of promoting trade, investment and tourism between Pacific Island countries and Japan,” PIC Director, Mr Ryuzo Saito said.
“There are positive prospects for coffee, cacao and horticulture in the Japanese market among other opportunities. We see potential in the future to conduct market research and develop strategic market development in Japan in cooperation with PHAMA Plus, which has a strong network with agricultural producers and exporters in the Pacific.”
In recent years, PIC has focused on supporting the sales of coffee and cocoa (chocolate) from Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Vanuatu, Samoa and other countries, to the Japanese market through participation in FOODEX Japan and other information and networking sharing events.
Japan is a highly developed country with the world’s third largest economy after USA and China. With a population of 130 million, the Japanese market is characterised by consumers with high levels of disposable income who are drawn to premium high-quality goods and services.
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About PHAMA Plus:
PHAMA Plus is funded by the Governments of Australia and New Zealand and aims to contribute to improved economic growth and improved rural livelihoods for Pacific peoples. PHAMA Plus provides practical and targeted assistance to help Pacific Island Countries manage regulatory aspects associated with exporting primary and processed horticulture and agriculture products. This encompasses the provision of support to PHAMA Plus beneficiaries to gain access for products into new markets and to help manage issues associated with maintaining and improving existing trade. Core countries assisted through PHAMA Plus are Fiji, PNG, Samoa, Solomons Islands, Tonga, and Vanuatu and program support is now being extended to Small Island States (SIS’s) that have ratified PACER Plus, currently Cook Islands, Kiribati, and Niue.
The Pacific Islands Centre (PIC), formally known as the South Pacific Economic Exchange Support Centre, is an international organisation established on 1st October 1996, by the Government of Japan and the South Pacific Forum to assist Forum Islands Countries (FIC) in sustainable economic development through the promotion of trade, investment, and tourism between Japan and the FICs. PIC supports the 16 Forum countries and territories from the Blue Pacific: The Cook Islands, The Federated State of Micronesia, Fiji, French Polynesia, Kiribati, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Nauru, New Caledonia, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.