September 17, 2008
China lifts ban on poultry from six US states
China has agreed to lift a bird flu-related ban on US imports of poultry products from six states at the conclusion of a high-level talk in California.
The lifting of restrictions on US poultry imports from six states - New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, West Virginia, Rhode Island and Nebraska - takes effect immediately, said US Agriculture Secretary Ed Schafer. The talks were held in Yorba Linda in an annual forum known as the US-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade.
Poultry products from Arkansas and Virginia, states where a strain of low pathogenic bird flu were reported recently, remain banned.
The United States exported US$600 million in poultry products to China during the past year. Overall poultry imports in China stood at 773,000 tonnes worth US$920 million in 2007, with volumes increasing 34 percent but values almost doubling. China is the third largest poultry export market for the US, behind Russia and Japan.
China has become the third-largest export market for US goods, taking in a record US$65.2 billion last year. However, imports from China reached a record US$321.5 billion over the same period, prompting calls from Congress to take call for an answer to "unfair" China trade.
Still, China refused to budge on the US beef issue, banned since December 2003.

US officials said the two sides agreed to a new round of technical discussions on beef safety in the near future.

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