Francisco Jolop Yoc, vice president of Asoflorsa, the Association of Flower Growers from San Juan, remarked that they had to import 8 new rose varieties from Ecuador to satisfy the requirements of the U.S. market.
"So far in the year, the country has earned $59.8 million exporting flowers, plants and seeds, according to data from the Central Bank of Guatemala", reported newspaper Prensa Libre.
Increased production costs and increased international competition have forced 71% of producers to turn to other crops.
The reasons for this, explained Monica Segnini, president of the Chamber of Exporters of Costa Rica (Cadexco ) are first "the exchange rate and the appreciation of the colon over the last three years, added to which is the increase in production costs".
The potential approval in second debate of the FTA could boost sales of these products to China.
China's interest in increasing trade relations with fruit and exotic flower producers in different countries could manifest itself soon in Costa Rica.
On approval of the free trade agreement with China, currently being debated in Congress, the Asian country may increase purchases of these products, as it is already something they are doing in different countries such as Ecuador.
Foreign sales of flowers, foliage and ornamental plants increased by 8% in 2012, totaling $81 million, which is $8 million more than last year.
The sector projected for this year an increase of 6.2% in exports. "Businessmen and producers see that it is necessary to promote growth of the sector and view the crisis in European countries as an opportunity", said Brigitte Obrock, coordinator of the commission of Ornamental Foliage and flowers at Agexport.
125 companies are engaged in the production and export of ornamental plants, flowers and foliage, generating more than $86 million in revenue in 2014 alone.
Companies in this sector plan expect to close 2015 with an increase of 5% in exports of ornamental plants compared to 2014, although the European market has yet to regain the levels of imports of plants and flowers it had before the crisis that erupted in 2009.
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