Russia lifts ban on US poultry
As of today, Russia will resume importing poultry and
eggs from the US state of Maryland, according to the Agriculture Ministry.
The ban was introduced on 8 September, after outbreaks of a low pathogenic
strain of bird
occurred in Maryland and Pennsylvania. The Russian Veterinary and
Phytosanitary Oversight Service introduced the restrictions.
The import bans were considered by some commentators to be a political card
in the battle between Russia and the US regarding Russia's US import quotas and
its membership of the WTO
Russia recently threatened to tighten import barriers on US meat unless an
agreement is reached about Russia joining the WTO by October. Unless Russia's
joining the WTO is agreed, Russia will cancel the existing preferences accorded
to US in meat and poultry supplies, which could result in US poultry exports to
Russia being cut by 40%.
The two countries were expected to sign the final protocol on the eve of
the G8 summit, which took place in St Petersburg in the middle of July. But at
the last moment the sides failed to reach an agreement on meat and poultry
exports. The United States demanded that the exports be allowed freely, without
any additional examinations by the Russian veterinary authorities. The Russian
side insisted that special veterinary commissions have to check the US producers
that want to export their products to Russia before they are given the green
According to Gordeyev, poultry exports to Russia bring the US about $1
billion in revenue annually.
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