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Canada Resumes Beef Trade Talks with Korea

23 October 2008

CANADA - The Government of Canada says it is working for farmers by pursuing technical negotiations with Korea on issues related to exports of Canadian beef. Korea banned imports of Canadian beef in May 2003, after bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) was discovered in a Canadian cow.

"This Government is committed to maximizing export opportunities for our world-class producers," said Federal Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz. "We promised to restore Canada's place on the world stage. Through strong and respectful working relationships we are increasing opportunities in countries like Korea."

Korea is a priority market for the Canadian beef industry. Before the market was closed in 2003, Korea represented the fourth largest market for Canadian beef with $50 million in annual sales.

In May 2007, the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) officially categorized Canada as a Controlled Risk country for BSE. This status clearly acknowledges the effectiveness of Canada's surveillance, mitigation and eradication measures. According to OIE Guidelines, there should be no restrictions on trade and Canada is requesting all trading partners to provide full market access to Canadian beef and beef products.

On November 3-4, 2008, technical negotiations will resume between Canadian and Korean officials. The negotiations will focus on creating increased export opportunities for Canadian beef. Restoring market access in Korea will allow Korean consumers to enjoy high-quality Canadian products at competitive prices, as enjoyed in many other markets around the world.

TheCattleSite News Desk



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