The neighboring regions of the Volga region suddenly decreased imports of this product from abroad
The amount of flowers imported into the Volga region suddenly dropped, Realnoe Vremya analysts calculated after studying data from the Federal Customs Service (FCS). The number has decreased by 94.2% in monetary terms over the past five years: from 8.4 million in 2016 to 489.6 million in 2020. Meanwhile, Tatarstan, on the other hand, has more quintupled its flower imports — to $133.7 million (2020). Experts cite changes in flower trafficking from abroad and its legalization as one of the reasons for the growth, but some speculate that something else could be brought to the republic under the guise of roses. Read more in Realnoe Vremya’s report.
Roses and chrysanthemums from abroad for a quarter of a billion dollars
Flower imports to Russia last year totaled 270.9 million dollars, the total weight exceeded 78 thousand tons. Roses accounted for almost half of this amount ($133.6 million), chrysanthemums were brought in for $46.6 million, carnations — for $14.8 million, lilies — for $4 million , orchids — 2.7 million dollars. Other flowers were purchased for $69 million.
Imports to the Volga Federal District have fallen catastrophically over the past five years by 94.2%. If flowers in 2016 were imported for $8.4 million, in 2020 we were imported for only $489.6 million. The total weight of imports increased from 1,371.7 tons to 162.4 tons during the same period. Orenburg, Nizhny Novgorod and Chuvashia oblasts have refused flower imports for the past three years.
Tatarstan looks more interesting here. While other regions have reduced or even suspended flower imports amid the pandemic and a complicated economic situation, the republic, in turn, has more than quintupled its amount in 2020.
“I don’t think roses come from Armenia”
To be more specific, in monetary terms, flowers imported to Tatarstan went from $23.9 in 2019 to $133.7 in 2020. Also, the borders were closed for a long time during the lockdown.
The roses represent the entire amount. The republic has not imported chrysanthemums from abroad for two years already, while in 2020 it also refused carnations and other flowers. Most of the flowers – for $117,000 – were imported from Armenia, the rest were imported from Uzbekistan (for $16,000).
Realnoe Vremya has previously written about a rise in flower prices, and experts name the legalization of traffic across the Russian border as one of the reasons:
“The products arrived by different routes via Belarus. Here is the answer to the question about the increase in imports, I think, ”thinks the director of Flower Paradise Rinat Ageyev.
Here is how Ildar Timerbayev, director of Botanica, commented on the situation with higher flower imports:
“I don’t think roses come from Armenia. I think it’s just roses according to the documents. It could probably be something else. As for the Kazan market, I saw Armenian roses 2-3 times in 2020, and the quantity was not so large. I haven’t seen flowers from Uzbekistan for the past six years. Our customs clearance used to be via Belarus. It will take much longer to bring flowers from Holland via Armenia (than Belarus).
“We produced three times as many flowers”
Flower exports to Russia are much lower than imports. So, products for 594,700 dollars were exported from our country in 2020, the total weight is 163.8 tons. Roses hold 73%, or
$434,700. Other flowers accounted for 24.4% of the total amount, or $145,000.
Flower exports in the Volga Federal District have been relatively stable over the past five years, with the exception of 2020. Supplies amounted to between $208 and $252 thousand. However, the share of exports during the year decreased more than twice, from $247,700 in 2019 to $111,500 in 2020.
According to the Federal Customs Service, flower exports from Tatarstan were zero. As Tatiana Shevchenko, head of the Avrora company, explained, in 2021 the share of local flowers in the republic is much higher:
“Not only do we buy, but we also produce flowers. This year we produced three times more flowers than last year and bought half as many flowers from Holland. We bet on the ordinary buyer, on the average receipt of about 500-700 rubles. If the buyer could buy 5-7 roses for this money, this year he can buy 5 roses. To ensure that the buyer can buy roughly the same bouquet for the same amount, we ordered fewer roses and planted more local flowers. »
Tatiana Shevchenko says that several factors have influenced the prices: the rate of the dollar, the logistics. Customs clearance used to be in Belarus, now it is in Moscow, delivery of the same product is more expensive. Some local producers have also raised prices because the tax system has changed.
The situation on the threshold of the holidays, on February 14, also had an impact. As Tatiana Shevchenko said, if the product was 1-2 days late due to holiday supplies, this year it’s been a week. “Flowers are a commodity with a short shelf life, 2-3 days is essential for us. We threw away a lot of goods. The wholesalers have suffered colossal losses,” says the newspaper’s interlocutor. It became possible to sort out the situation only on March 8, there were no longer long delays in supplies.
By Yevgeny Khramov