March 21, 2012


South Korea's pork tariff quota to be extended


South Korea will extend its tariff quotas for pork belly and dried peppers by three months to ensure steady supply while stabilising domestic prices, the finance ministry said.


The tariff quotas for the two items will be extended till the end of June, with Seoul to increase the pork belly quota by 70,000 tonnes. The ministry said the quota for dried peppers has been raised to 11,185 tonnes from 6,185 tonnes.


Reports stated both quotas were scheduled to expire on March 31.


The tariff quota system is used to help control the inflow of products from abroad that can affect local prices. The government can expand the volume of products to be imported under favourable tariff rates if it expects a shortfall in supply that can fuel inflationary pressure.


"The move is necessary because there is usually a surge in demand for pork belly in spring time," the finance ministry said.


It added that the Cabinet approved a motion to extend the quotas earlier in the day, with policymakers to consider extending the quotas further after it examines domestic prices and supply trends.


The latest measures, however, do not include extending the tariff quota for garlic, which will expire at the end of the month as planned.

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