“Pakistan has huge potential to become self-sufficient in the tea sector. We can cover 95% of our national demand if we plant tea on an extra 2,000 hectares of land granted by the government and invested by private enterprises,” said Dr. Abdul Waheed, Director of the National Tea and High Value Crop Research Institute, PARC.
Due to Pakistan’s strong reliance on tea imports, production capacity has to be increased. Pakistan would spend $596 million importing 2,258,000 kilograms of black and green tea in 2021. Pakistan’s tea imports increased by 11.95 percent over the first three quarters of the current fiscal year when compared to the same time in 2016.
“We have 64,000 hectares of land suitable for tea plantation. But now less than eighty hectares are devoted to tea plantation. In the first year, at least we should start from 2,000 to 10,000 hectares under public-private partnership”, he said.
“The lengthy development time of tea trees is determined by natural law. We can reduce the time from 7 to 10 years to 3 to 5 years thanks to modern technology, but once the tea leaves are harvested, the trees can be used for decades, according to Prof. Hu Bo from China’s Zhangzhou College of Science and Technology, which is situated in the well-known tea city of Zhangzhou.
Currently, selling tea leaves accounts for more than 35% of the income of tea farmers in Zhangzhou city. The local tea business includes the primary, secondary, and tertiary sectors and offers a wide range of goods and services, such as tea leaves, food cooked with tea, tea sets, tourism, education, and culture centered on tea.
China is a top ten tea exporter to Pakistan. In 2021, it exported $5.32M worth of tea to Pakistan and provides 42% of the imported green tea in Pakistan.
It is unexpected to learn that Pakistan is now exporting tea to China.
In the first four months of 2022, Pakistan shipped more than 5000 kg of red tea and other fermented tea, according to the General Administration of Customs of China. It’s not a lot, but it’s still motivating.
General Manager of Guangzhou Quality Import & Export, Furqan Mawani, revealed to a reporter that his firm brings over 100 tons of green and red tea into China from Pakistan.
“Pakistani teas are known for their strong flavorful taste and rich aromas. But another reason why Pakistani tea products have a place in the Chinese market is because of the relationship and bond the two countries share.