USTR Ron Kirk Travels to Russia to Discuss Trade Issues

Pork ban and WTO application are major items on agenda.

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk travels to Russia Wednesday for his first meeting with senior government officials from Moscow. Kirk will participate in a dialogue with U.S. and Russian business leaders to discuss deepening U.S. and Russia commercial ties. Kirk will also meet with senior officials to discuss bilateral trade issues, including Russia's continued bans on U.S. pork, beef and poultry products. Russian authorities haven't indicated if they are willing to ease their restrictions.

 

On May 22 while speaking to the U.S. Meat Export Federation Kirk promised to press Russia on the meat issue. He told the USMEF that one problem facing U.S. pork exports to Russia is Russia's application of sanitary measures that aren't based on international standards. During the last year Kirk said the problem has resulted in the delisting of many U.S. facilities that export to Russia.

 

Kirk is also expected to discuss Russia's application to join the World Trade Organization with European Union Trade Commissioner Catherine Ashton during this week's St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. Russia is the last major economy in the world not part of the WTO.

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