Russia seeks compromise, not ban on EU meat

MOSCOW - Russia will not ban meat imports from European Union countries on April 1 and is seeking a compromise with Brussels on food safety issues, a spokesman for the country's animal and plant health watchdog said on Thursday.
calendar icon 29 March 2007
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"Definitely not. We hope to find a compromise with the EU on these issues," Rosselkhoznadzor spokesman Alexei Alexeyenko said when asked whether Russia would ban meat imports from April 1 from any EU country.

"But we have to be convinced of the safety of the food we import and the efficiency of the EU food safety guarantees."

Rosselkhoznadzor has requested the European Commission to present by March 31 plans from all member countries for monitoring dangerous and banned substances in animal products. It also requested data from last year.

The agency's head, Sergei Dankvert, told Reuters this month that Rosselkhoznadzor would be forced to suspend shipments of animal products from those countries that did not supply data.

"Everything will depend on the EU's response. If the EU does not provide monitoring information from particular countries, we will send an additional request for data on those countries," Alexeyenko said.

Source: Reuters AlertNet

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