Kuwaiti Livestock Company Faces Increased Competition, Higher Prices
The Kuwaiti Livestock Transport & Trading Company will distribute 15 percent of its profits to its shareholders for the year ending December 31, 1999. Faisal Abdullah Al-Khozam, the Company's Board of Directors Chairman, stated during a general assembly meeting that the Kuwaiti Livestock Transport and Trading Company achieved net profits of KD3.82 million (about $12.7 million) in 1999, Al-Watan Daily reported.
The Kuwaiti company, which owns and operates livestock and chilled and frozen meat shipments, expects that the price of Australian sheep (which it imports) will rise significantly. This price hike is due to the gradual decline in Australian sheep heads, which a year ago stood at 185 million and now merely number 125 million. This figure is expected to drop to 90 million heads in two years. According to Al-Khozam, no viable substitute exists for the Australian sheep, since the price of New Zealand sheep is even higher.
In 1999, the company imported 804,007 sheep heads from Australia by its own means, with an additional 307,288 sheep brought in via leased ships. The Arab Gulf Council Cooperation states’ total sheep imports reached 1.2 million heads in 1999.
Al-Khozam told the general assembly members that the Kuwaiti Livestock Transport and Trading Co. controls 75 percent of the local sheep market. He added that the company faced stiff competition in the Kuwaiti prepared meat market. To overcome this increasing trend, the company is striving to improve its product quality. Further, the company is seeking to diversify its range of products, and is considering an immediate launch of a new line of prepared, microwaveable foods.
© 2000 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)
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