US - Several US Senators have expressed their concern after South Africa missed another key deadline on the road to implementing agreed quotas of American poultry imports.
After years of dispute, an agreement was reached in Paris in June that South Africa would allow these import quotas in return for duty-free access to US markets under the African Growth Opportunities Act (AGOA).
In September, South Africa stated that terms and conditions and the poultry certificate for export would be finalised by 15 October 2015, allowing poultry shipments before the end of this year. However, these details have still not been agreed.
Important differences remain on the health certificate and trade protocol. The US has insisted that South Africa follow World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) guidelines to use a regional approach for avian influenza.
“We are concerned that South Africa has not followed through on its promise to address key issues by October 15, preventing full implementation of the deal,” said Senators Tom Carper, Chris Coons and Johnny Isakson.
“South Africa failed to finalise both the trade protocol and health certificate for US poultry despite the Administration’s intense engagement with South Africa over the past year to resolve these issues.
"We believe this inaction must be factored into the out-of-cycle review of South Africa's AGOA eligibility and urge the Administration to take appropriate action.
"South Africa must take the necessary steps to resolve outstanding barriers to US poultry immediately if its AGOA benefits are to be preserved. Hardworking poultry farmers in our home states and across the country should not have to wait any longer to participate in the South African market.”ThePoultrySite News Desk