(MENAFN - Arab News) A shipment of more than 21,000 livestock and 2,000 camels from Somalia arrived at Jeddah Islamic Port on Saturday.
The shipment is one of many yet to come and is expected to cover the needs of the livestock market for the month of Ramadan.
Suleiman Al-Jabri, head of the livestock committee at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI), expected livestock prices to decline.
Al-Jabri announced that shipments carrying more than a million livestock would arrive in the next few days at Jeddah port to cover local market needs for the month of Ramadan and until Haj.
"The availability of imported livestock in the market will help reduce prices by 10 percent," he said. He praised the role of the Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Commerce in monitoring the local market.
Al-Jabri denied any increase in livestock prices with the start of Ramadan. He said prices were declining in the past few days after permission was granted to import livestock from Somalia.
He added that the livestock committee sent recommendations to the Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Commerce on the importance of supporting livestock businessmen and importers as it would help reduce prices.
"There was an agreement to support livestock businessmen in light of the global price increases and because of the declining value of the dollar. This forced many traders to temporarily stop importing from countries like Australia because their prices are not suitable for the local consumer. There was a shortage of livestock in the local market, which forced prices to increase. The price increase drove some traders to import frozen meat, which was also not suitable for consumers," he said.
He said the long-term support demanded in the letter sent to the ministries called for facilitating veterinary examinations at Saudi seaports.
The letter urged the authorities not to reject any livestock shipments because some of the animals were found sick, especially as quarantine facilities are available at the port.
Any returned shipment will cause huge losses for importers.
He also highlighted the importance of the government supporting investors in establishing agriculture projects and processing units outside the Kingdom that has agricultural capabilities. He also called for providing easy loans for such investments.