Viet Nam urges Australia to ease shrimp trade ban

Monday, May 22, 2017 09:00

A processing line for exports. — VNA/VNS Photo Huy Hung

Viet Nam is working to persuade Australia towards an early lift of its ban on import of Vietnamese shrimp and uncooked shelled shrimp.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT), in co-ordination with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, is working with the relevant agencies in Australia in this regard.

On January 7, the Australian Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources announced the suspension of prawn and uncooked shelled shrimp imports from Asian nations fearing an outbreak of the white spot disease in Australia. The ban took effect on January 9 and will last for six months.

The MoIT has raised the issue of ban at all bilateral meetings with the Australian side, expressing Viet Nam’s concerns and asking Australia to consider lifting the ban or replacing it with other measures that would have less impact on business.

Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh sent a public letter to the Minister of Trade, Tourism and Investment and the Minister of Agriculture and Water Resources of Australia regarding the matter in February.

According to the MoIT, Australia’s Minister of Agriculture and Water Resources and the Minister of Trade, Tourism and Investment sent their replies on March 8 and April 30, respectively, explaining that the ban was based on regulations for bio-security.

They added that the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources was working on the matter, including reviewing of the import conditions for products targeted by the ban, to make the decision on resumption of safe trading of shrimps.

The Australian ministers affirmed that bilateral trade with Viet Nam was important to their country, including trading in agricultural products. They said Australia was willing to co-operate with Vietnam to review the risk assessment measures. — VNS

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