VN will remove ban on French beef, expects French secretary

Wednesday, Jul 29, 2015 19:43

France seeks Viet Nam removal of ban on the import of bee and apple and open for Kiwi.— VNS Photo
HA NOI (Biz Hub) — Viet Nam is the last country to not have totally lifted the ban on French beef products, said Martine Pinville, Secretary of State for Trade, Crafts, Consumer Affairs and the Social and Solidarity Economy, on July 28.

During her two day working visit to Ha Noi, the secretary met leaders of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and those from the ministry of Trade and Industry to talk about complete lifting of the ban, emphasising that the ban has now been in effect for 18 years

She said, "It is too long for such a ban to stay in place" in the context of achieving a balance in bilateral trade relations.

The secretary said though Viet Nam resumed the import of French beef in May 2015, permission was only granted in case of boneless beef that was less than 30 months old.

Like many other countries, Viet Nam imposed a ban on French beef products in 1998 following the spread of mad-cow disease at that time in France. In 2008, the World Animal Health Organization officially recognized that the disease was under control in France which resumed export of beef to the EU, Brazil, the US, New Zealand as well as other markets in ASEAN countries, including Singapore, Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos.

She said a complete scrapping of the ban on French beef would not only serve the interests of the French farmers, but would also present local consumers with another choice of beef with good quality.

On the occasion, Pinville brought profiles of 22 French companies which wanted to export beef to Viet Nam, adding that she hoped a decision would be forthcoming by August.

French Ambassador Jean-Noel Poirier said Viet Nam was a very promising market for export of beef of good quality, considering the increasing beef import from Australia and Japan.

According to data, beef import turnover increased by 70 per cent in 2014, and demand was forecast to rise in the future with new supply.

In addition to beef, France also worked to have the ban lifted on its apple and open the Viet Nam market for its Kiwi. After checking out the French apple in May, the secretary had hoped that Viet Nam could consider opening markets to the fruit again.

Regarding the export of local products to France, the ambassador said France always welcomed Viet Nam products. Currently, France allows the local lychee which is expected to be sold in French supermarkets by next month.

Vietnamese mango was also under necessary inspection steps before the fruit is exported to the country. The ambassador recommended that local agricultural products need to meet all the European standards while the exporters need to provide sustainable quantities of products, once orders are accepted.

He said once the fruits were accepted in France, they could easily be transported to other European countries without any further difficulty. — VNS

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