Taiwan okays imports of Canadian bone-in-beef
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-02-06 01:54 PM
Taiwan has signed an agreement with Canada to expand access to the Taiwan market to include Canadian bone-in beef and other specified beef products from animals under 30 months of age (UTM). The arrangement will level the playing field for Canada against other beef-producing countries and is expected to be finalized by early March.

Gerry Ritz, Canada’s Minister of Agriculture, noted, “Our government welcomes Taiwan’s science-based decision to expand market access for Canadian beef. Advancing agricultural trade in growing Asian markets like Taiwan is just one way our government is helping our agriculture exporters boost their competitiveness around the world.”

Taiwan is the latest country to ease trade restrictions placed on Canada in 2003 after an outbreak of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). Prior to the restrictions, Taiwan had been Canada's fifth-largest export market for beef, worth US$17.8 million in 2002, ranking Taiwan as Canada’s 5th largest export market for beef. In June 2007, Canada regained access to Taiwan for boneless beef derived from UTM animals. By 2012 Canada’s exports of boneless UTM frozen, fresh and chilled beef to Taiwan reached $1.4 million, making the island Canada’s 18th largest market for beef.

In 2012, Canada exported beef to over 65 markets, for a total value of $1.2 billion.

A parliamentary delegation headed by Dominic LeBlanc visited Taiwan in late January and voiced his hopes that resolving the beef issue will make it easier to reach agreements on investment and double taxation avoidance between the two nations.

President Ma Ying-jeou also applauded the signing of the beef agreement, noting that members of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) "have an interest in including as many countries who want to participate as possible." The TPP currently is being negotiated by the United States and 11 Pacific Rim nations, including Canada. Ma expressed hope that Canada will support Taiwan's bid to participate in the TPP.

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