China lifts import ban on US poultry due to coronavirus

China approves imports of all poultry products from US for first time since avian influenza in 2015

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China lifts ban on poultry products from U.S. (Pixabay photo)

China lifts ban on poultry products from U.S. (Pixabay photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Chinese government announced Monday (Feb. 17) the country will lift the ban on the import of poultry products from the U.S., a decision believed to have been made due to pressure from the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

According to a statement released by the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, the Chinese government is lifting a five-year ban on imports of U.S. poultry, after they were halted in 2015 due to avian influenza. The announcement also allows for the import of live birds, reported Taro News.

The move is part of the preliminary trade deal reached by the U.S. and China in October. Following the meeting of representatives from both countries, the U.S. decided to allow China's cooked poultry products into the country, which the Chinese government responded to by lifting restrictions on the import of poultry meat, but not other poultry products, from the U.S.

Another factor that played a part in China's policy change was a recurrence of the highly deadly H5N1 bird flu in the Chinese city of Hunan last month, resulting in more than 17,000 birds being culled by local authorities. As different forms of disease continue to shake the country, the government is implementing any tactics it can to prevent the country from falling apart, reported UDN.