U.S., China finalize details for beef exports

Updated 2017-06-13 11:08:44 Xinhua

The United States has reached agreements with China on final details of a protocol to allow it to export beef to China, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Monday.

As part of the U.S.-China 100-day action plan to boost bilateral economic cooperation, the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump "has taken important steps toward commercial shipment of U.S. beef and beef products to China for the first time since 2003," the department said.

"Today is a great day for the United States and in particular for our cattle producers, who will be regaining access to an enormous market with an ever-expanding middle class," U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue said in a statement.

"As we clear away long-standing issues like this one, focusing on near-term, verifiable deliverables, we are building a sound foundation for further discussions," U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross said in a separate statement.

U.S. National Cattlemen's Beef Association (NCBA) also hailed the agreement on beef exports, a top priority for the association over the past decade.

"In recent years, China has become one of the largest import markets for beef, and these terms are a reflection of China's trust in the safety and quality of U.S. beef," said Craig Uden, president of the NCBA.

"We hope that by getting our foot in the door we can develop a long lasting and mutually beneficial relationship with China," he said.

During a meeting at the Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida in April, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Trump agreed to establish a comprehensive economic dialogue and initiate a 100-day plan to boost bilateral economic cooperation.

Last month, the two sides announced the initial results of the 100-day action plan, which covers such areas as agriculture, financial services, investment and energy.

As the results of the action plan, China will allow imports of U.S. beef and the United States is to import poultry from China. Most of the agreements are expected to be implemented by July 16.

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