Kathmandu: Ahead of Valentine's Day, Nepal will import over one lakh red roses from India to meet their growing demand from lovebirds, who may shell out a crore rupees to say it with flowers this year.
"We have estimated around 1 lakh roses to arrive from India as shops are expecting a massive rush before Valentine's Day," said Lok Nath Gaire, President of Florists Association of Nepal (FAN). Flower traders said they had placed large import orders from India for the flowers ahead of February 14, the Valentine's Day, when lovebirds exchange red roses to express affection for each other.
They said 90 per cent of the total flower requirement was fulfilled by suppliers from Kolkata, Pune and Bangalore. The rest come from Kathmandu, Lalitpur, Chitwan and other parts of Nepal. According to florists, roses may cost Rs 20-30 more per piece due to a price rise in India. So, a rose costing Rs 50-80 last year may cost up to Rs 100 this year, traders said.
With the rise in prices, couples are expected to shell out a whopping Rs 1 crore this year. Last year, over 95 per cent of roses were bought. Prices have gone up due to swelling demand for flowers, and customers should be ready to pay 20 per cent more than the last time, said Gaire. Valentine's Day is incomplete without flowers and we are importing the same quantity of flowers as last year, he said.
Due to growing rush for shopping gift items, flowers, perfumes, chocolates, wrist watches, jewellery, mobiles and greeting cards have been flying off the shelves in shops in Nepal. The gift shops and florists have also launched various gift schemes and discounts to attract customers and so have hotels and restaurants.