Costa Rica: State Distorts Pork Market

The government started selling pork from local producers to industrialists who normally prefer to import it from Chilean producers at lower prices.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015


A section of the Solis administration is still implementing protectionist concepts that are in conflict with the development model which is open to foreign trade reflected so far in multiple FTAs.

The deadlines for the elimination of products established in these treaties are accomplished inexorably without local producers having taken advantage of that timeframe to gain the productivity needed to compete with producers in other countries. Now pig farmers are complaining about not being able to offer the prices and the quality of pork coming from Chile, pressing the government to block imports from that country, which are coming in at lower prices than can be offered by local producers.

Now, after blocking the entry of Hass avocados from Mexico using preventative phytosanitary measures which do not have a technical basis, the government is trying to satisfy domestic pork producers by making "... efforts to support the Costa Rican pork sector" and as indicated in a statement by the Presidency, the purpose of these measures is to "... support the Costa Rican pork sector in order to get them out of the crisis of low prices affecting the activity."

See press release "MAG increases domestic consumption of pork."

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The June 2015 report by the National Production Council on the pork market contains data and information relevant to understand the protests by farmers against imports from Chile and statements about representatives from various economic sectors and companies operating in this market.

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Imports of pork from Chile have grown and local pork producers are asking the government for actions to be taken to protect them from the competition.

Problems of competitiveness are emerging for some sectors of the Costa Rican agro/livestock production, as entrepreneurs from other countries with which it has free trade agreements -in this case Chile - are taking advantage of opportunities provided by those treaties.