Agreement reached in US-South Africa poultry dispute
A move has been made which paves the way for the reopening of the South African market to US chicken imports, which have been shut out for the past 15 years.
Representatives from South Africa and the US met in Paris recently and agreed on the framework to provide renewed market access for US bone-in chicken into the South African market.
The Governments also agreed to a firm set of actions this month to resolve the remaining sanitary issues related to poultry, pork, and beef. The framework provides for the return of exports to South Africa of US bone-in chicken after the two governments complete necessary implementation steps.
Resume shipments as soon as possible
While both sides recognise it may take some time for the South African government to complete its regulatory process, both sides are committed to expedite processes and resume shipments of US chicken as quickly as possible, a joint statement announced. Both Governments and industries have committed to further engagements on development issues that will enhance production in South Africa as well as participation of Historically Disadvantaged Individuals (HDIs) into the poultry industry.
The South African delegation was led by Ambassador Faizel Ismail and included senior officials of the Departments of Trade and Industry and the Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. The South African Poultry Association CEO Kevin Lovell was joined by South African poultry producers. The US delegation was led by US Ambassador to South Africa Patrick H. Gaspard, accompanied by senior officials from the Office of the US Trade Representative, and the US Department of Agriculture. Mike Brown, president of the National Chicken Council, and Jim Sumner, president of the USA Poultry & Egg Export Council represented the US industry.
"Commendable effort by the poultry industry"
The Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies who was in Paris met with the delegations. Minister stated that "the framework agreed by the two industries facilitates South Africa's continued participation in AGOA and is a commendable effort by the poultry industry in the interest of the South African economy."
Ambassador Gaspard stated, "The Paris meetings made significant progress. The United States and South Africa can work together to address trade issues, demonstrating that US trade tools can effectively deliver results for the United States. I am happy with the progress towards a mutually agreed solution that we made, and look forward to our working together to resolve bilateral trade problems."
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