30 April 1998
Rains devastate Somalias banana trade

FLOODING resulting from El Niño has devastated Somalias banana industry, with this years exports expected to be 50% down on last years levels.

Last years floods waterlogged plantations and swept away secondary roads, preventing young suckers from sprouting and making it impossible to move bananas to port.

Early estimates suggest that 20% of the 3,409ha (8,424 acres) cultivated last October had been destroyed by the floods.

Somali bananas will be doubly exposed next year when European Union preferential import quotas for African and Caribbean countries are due to expire.

  • Financial Times 30/04/98 page 41