By Eliaser Ndeyanale
AGRICULTURE, Water and Forestry Minister, John Mutorwa, has expressed his concern over the number of years that have passed since the signing of a deal that will eventually see Namibia exporting beef to China, but which has been delayed because of the Asian nation’s reviewing of a section dealing with animal health and quarantine.
The agreement was signed about three years ago, but China has subsequently revised it.
Last year, the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China requested that a Chinese team of technical experts visit Namibia with the sole intent to renegotiate the agreement on the export of Namibian beef to China, following an outbreak of lumpy skin disease (LSD).
According to the agreement signed between the two governments, once any disease – either a skin disease or foot-and-mouth – breaks out, beef exports must be terminated for at least one year. Once the twelve months have passed, the two nations then have to renegotiate the content, as well as the text, of the agreement.
Namibia will be the first African country to export bone-in beef to China, after the two countries complete the revision of a signed protocol on veterinary health conditions and quarantine.
Under the protocol, beef means the frozen deboned and bone-in meat, excluding head, feet, offal and viscera and other by-products.
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