Liz Truss outlines details of beef trade plans
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Japan is renowned internationally for its stringent food safety and import control regime, in addition to its preference for high-quality, varied cuts of meats. The Government has hailed the agreement as proof of the high standards of UK poultry production methods.
Food Minister Victoria Prentis said: “Our high-quality poultry with its exceptional flavour is renowned around the world, as are the high standards of food safety and animal welfare demonstrated by farmers and producers across the UK.
“The Japanese market will now be able to enjoy more of our unique produce, adding to an already varied collection of UK food, such as pork, beef and lamb, already available to its customers.
“We are working hard to open new markets for our agri-food businesses, and this is a significant opportunity for the UK poultry sector.”
The market opening is the result of a series of complex negotiations which have been conducted over the last four years between the UK and Japanese officials in order to agree specific animal health requirements.
Benefits of this development will be felt across the supply chain throughout the UK and will open up new opportunities for British farmers, Mrs Prentis believes.
Ranil Jayawardena, Minister for International Trade, said: “This is fantastic news for farmers and food producers across the whole of the United Kingdom who can now take advantage of this new market and export poultry meat to Japan – the world’s third largest economy – for the first time.”
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The built on the UK’s trade deal with Japan, which Mr Jayawardena said had helped secure “new wins for our brilliant food and drinks industry” as well as boosting trade between the two nations, which was valued at more than £24 billion in 2020 alone.
He added: “This is Global Britain at work, opening doors to new markets for our great British businesses, removing unnecessary barriers to trade and creating new opportunities across every part of the United Kingdom.”
Dr Richard Irvine, UK Deputy Chief Veterinary Officer, said: “This represents a major achievement for the UK poultry meat industry, providing UK exporters with the opportunity to further tap into the overseas demand for their poultry meat.
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“This is another positive step towards strengthening the UK’s trade relationship with Japan, in addition to the existing agreements which enable export of pork, beef and lamb from the UK.”
Katie Doherty, CEO of the International Meat Trade Association, said: “The agreement reduces tariffs on frozen chicken cuts from an average of 10 percent to zero over a number of years.
“Without the market access Defra has negotiated, UK exporters would not have been able to benefit from these tariff reductions which the government worked to secure.”
Richard Griffiths, Chief Executive of the British Poultry Council, added: “The British Poultry Council welcomes the exciting news of British export market access for poultry meat to Japan, the world’s third largest economy.
“Our industry has worked closely with Government to open doors and create new opportunities for British poultry meat businesses that produce safe, affordable and nutritious food to world-class standards.
“We look forward to carrying on pursuing new markets to continue putting UK poultry meat on every table around the world.”
In October 2020, International Trade Secretary Liz Trus and Motegi Yoshihide, Japan’s Foreign Minister, signed the UK-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA), and the agreement is now in force.
The agreement ensures UK businesses could benefit from tariff-free trade on 99 percent of UK goods exports to Japan after a number of years.
Government analysis shows that a deal with Japan could deliver a £1.5 billion boost to the UK economy and increase UK workers’ wages by £800 million in the long run, compared with a situation where the UK does not have an agreement with Japan.
The agreement of Animal Health Requirements (AHR) between Defra and the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (JMAFF) for export of both fresh and cooked poultry meat was concluded in April 2021.
Discussions were led by Defra with support from the British Embassy Tokyo and working in close collaboration with the International Meat Trade Association (IMTA) and the British Poultry Council (BPC).
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