The export of horticultural products brought in 286 million dollars over the first half of the fiscal year. The figure is a 20pc jump from the revenues recorded over the same period last year. Flowers account for the majority of the earnings at 246.4 million dollars, according to the Ethiopian Horticulture Producer Exporters Association (EHPEA), which represents over 100 members. Vegetables and herbs shipped abroad brought in a little over 31 million dollars, while fruits generated revenues of nine million dollars. The performance is 12pc higher than what had been targeted. The industry lobby group decried the central bank's decision to slash foreign currency retention rates for exporters by half to 20pc last month. Cut-flower growers and exporters demand foreign currency to import inputs such as fertilisers, chemicals and packaging. The Association's leaders had written a letter to the central bank voicing the misgivings of their members and pleading with the authorities to treat "producer-exporters" differently from other traders.
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