At the conclusion of the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade meeting this week in Hangzhou, China, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced that China will re-open their markets to imports of U.S. pork and live swine.
"Two-way trade of agricultural, fish, and forest products between the U.S. and China has grown in recent years to over $21 billion per year, opening increasingly important connections that can benefit farmers, ranchers and consumers in both countries," said Vilsack. "China's intent to remove its H1N1-related ban on U.S. pork marks an important step forward in cooperation between the countries on agriculture issues."
Kirk also spoke about the importance of China basing the opening on science and international standards. China closed its market to U.S. pork and swine in May during the height of the H1N1 outbreak, closing the fastest growing export market for U.S. pork. More than $560 million in U.S. pork was exported to China in 2008.