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EU to file complaint with WTO over Russia’s ban on pork from European countries

April 03, 2014, 22:09 UTC+3 BRUSSELS
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BRUSSELS, April 03, /ITAR-TASS/. European Union plans to file a complaint with the World Trade Organization shortly over Russia’s ban on the imports of pork from European countries, John Clancy, a spokesperson for the European Commission said.

He said the EU had no other choice left than to begin preparations of a complaint, which would be filed with the WTO over the problem of Russia’s restrictions on the imports of pork from the countries of Europe

A spokesman for Russia’s agricultural watchdog agency Rosselkhoznadzor told Itar-Tass earlier Thursday Moscow was banking the imports of all types of finished meat products from Poland and Lithuania as of April 7, 2014.

“We’re drafting a letter on joining the measures introduced by Belarus, our partner in the Customs Union, on restricting the supplies of all types of finished meat produce from Poland and Lithuania,” the spokesman said.

The ban would hold effect until the completion of inspections at the Polish and Lithuanian agricultural facilities where the meat products originated.

By taking this decision, Rosselkhoznadzor took account of a highly unrewarding position officials from the two countries took at the end of March at the talks on the safety of meat produce, the spokesman said.

A ban on the products of hog raising from all the countries of the EU was introduced January 30 in the wake of an upsurge of African Swine Fever (ASF) on the territory of the EU.

Rosselkhoznadzor said earlier the farming industry in Poland and Lithuania was using the technologies that presupposed substitution of raw stuffs. In practical terms, this means that pork can be used in the products labeled as poultry.

Rosselkhoznadzor experts expressed the apprehensions that thermal conditioning did not always kill the ASF virus and the infection might thus get to the Russian market with infected meat products.

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