Restoration of beef trade a prerequisite for U.S.-Korean FTA

by Editor
Thursday, March 22, 2007

Full restoration of beef trade with Korea should be a prerequisite for a U.S.-Korean Free Trade Agreement (FTA).

This had been testified by AMI President J. Patrick Boyle before the House Committee on Ways and Means Subcommittee on Trade.

In his testimony, Boyle told the Subcommittee that the U.S. government and beef industry have a proactive track record of BSE prevention and the U.S. has earned the right to export beef freely under international guidelines set by the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE).

He detailed the United States’ interlocking safeguards against BSE and expressed frustration with Korea’s inaction in restoring full beef trade.

Just last week, according to Boyle, World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) expert panel recommended a preliminary designation for the U.S. of a "Controlled Risk" country for BSE.

Boyle told the committee that prior to December 2003, Korea represented the U.S.’ third largest beef export market valued at $750 million. Korea ceased all U.S. beef imports following the first U.S. case of BSE and has been slow to restore full and meaningful beef trade with the U.S. even though international animal health guidelines support restoration of trade.