Malaysia and Egypt are two good alternative for garlic import instead of China, where the outbreak of a lethal, pneumonia-like virus named coronavirus has led to a breakdown in the supply chain of the spice.
Bangladeshi Businessmen are also considering India, Pakistan and Indonesia as an alternative sources for another key cooking ingredient, ginger, according to a Bangladesh Tariff Commission (BTC) report recently obtained from the commerce ministry.
This BTC recommendation comes at a time when the disruption in the supply chain for spices imported from China has led to increased prices for garlic and ginger in the domestic market for the past month.
The price for garlic, an essential cooking ingredient, increased by 50 per cent to Tk 180-210 per kilogram in Dhaka as of yesterday, according to market price data compiled by the Trading Corporation of Bangladesh.
The country consumes six lakh tonnes of garlic and three lakh tonnes of ginger per year, according to the report.
The import data for garlic and ginger revealed that China accounts for 96 per cent of the 52,500 tonnes of garlic imported during the July-December period.
The other Garlic and Ginger was imported from India and Myanmar.
Private importers brought 70,000 tonnes of ginger to the country during the first-half of fiscal 2019-20.