Vietnamese Government says Australia's prawn import ban is 'causing serious damage' to its producers
Updated March 10, 2017 16:51:33
The Vietnamese Government has accused Australia of "causing serious damage" to its prawn farmers and exporters, and has asked the Federal Government to reconsider the ban on uncooked imports.
Federal Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce announced a six-month suspension on the importation of raw prawns in January, following an outbreak of white spot disease in Queensland.
Vietnam's Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade, Tran Quoc Khanh, said the ban had damaged his country's aquaculture industry which exports about $55 million worth of uncooked prawns to Australia.
"In our view, [the ban] is not in line with common practices and the spirit of nurturing and enhancing the existing good trade relationship between Vietnam and Australia," Mr Tran told the ABC.
"The temporary ban on uncooked prawns was issued by the Australian Government without giving sufficient time, by an advanced warning, for Vietnamese prawn exporters to take needed actions to avoid such large economic losses.
"The prawn import suspension imposed by the Australian Government has been causing serious damage to the prawn farmers and exporters in Vietnam."A number of Vietnamese exporters specialising in the Australian market are facing the risk of going bankrupt due to the suspension."
Australian authorities are still investigating how white spot disease spread to Australia, while prawn farmers have blamed Asian imports.
Mr Tran said Vietnam should be allowed to keep exporting raw prawns to Australia until there was proof foreign imports were the source of the outbreak.
"In the case that Australia continues to maintain the ban, Vietnam requests Australia to provide adequate scientific evidence as soon as possible, that shows a causal relationship between the prawn imports from Vietnam and the outbreak of white spot disease in Australia," Mr Tran said...
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-03-10/v ... an/8344002
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