BEIJING, China, May 15, 2006— A delegation from the U.S. and Chinese governments concluded two days of negotiations to establish a protocol for the resumption of U.S. beef sales to China.
"We’ve made considerable progress with China during these discussions to reopen their market to U.S. beef and we will meet again soon to conclude the talks," said Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services Dr. J.B. Penn. "We also developed and completed a memorandum of cooperation that provides a basis for addressing food safety issues on an ongoing basis."
The discussions in Beijing follow the 17th U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT) meeting in Washington last month at which China agreed to reopen its market to U.S. beef prior to June 30 after development of a science-based trading protocol, consistent with World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) guidelines.
The U.S. delegation was led by USDA’s Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services Dr. J.B. Penn and included representatives from USDA agencies, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR). The Chinese delegation was led by the Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) Vice Minister Ge Zhirong and included various representatives from the Chinese government.
In addition, USDA officials are now traveling to Japan to continue discussions on the resumption of U.S. beef sales to Japan. Acting Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Dr. Chuck Lambert and Ellen Terpstra, Deputy Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agriculture Services, are leading the delegation to Japan.
Release No. 0166.06
FAS PR 0057-06
Ed Loyd (202) 720-4623
Donald Washington (202) 720-3101