July 13, 2024

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China: Zero Import of Seafood from Japan in September

China: Zero Import of Seafood from Japan in September

China: Zero Import of Seafood from Japan in September

In September, China’s imports of aquatic products from Japan dropped to zero.

According to the monthly import and export statistics report released by China General Administration of Customs, there were no recorded imports of “fish and other aquatic invertebrates” from Japan to China in September.

In contrast, in August, China imported aquatic products in this category worth 149 million RMB.

Data also reveals that for the first eight months, China imported a total of 2.085 billion RMB worth of goods from Japan, which aligns precisely with the cumulative data released for the first nine months, indicating that China did not import any aquatic products from Japan in the entire month of September.

China: Zero Import of Seafood from Japan in September China: Zero Import of Seafood from Japan in September

In the customs report published today, there were also no recorded imports of meat, fish, and other aquatic invertebrate products from Japan in September.

On August 24th, despite strong international objections, the Japanese government unilaterally initiated the discharge of contaminated water from the Fukushima nuclear plant into the sea. On the same day, the Chinese General Administration of Customs issued a notice to safeguard food safety and protect Chinese consumers’ health, based on the Food Safety Law of the People’s Republic of China, its implementation regulations, and the Measures for the Administration of Import and Export Food Safety of the People’s Republic of China, as well as relevant provisions of the World Trade Organization’s Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures. China decided to implement emergency measures to suspend the import of Japanese aquatic products comprehensively, starting from August 24th.

According to statistics from the China Chamber of Commerce of Foodstuffs and Native Produce, China’s imports of seafood and related products from Japan in August amounted to 29 million USD, a 63% decrease compared to the same period last year, constituting 26.2% of the total value of agricultural product imports from Japan. Specifically, imports of shellfish amounted to 15 million USD, down by 67.1% compared to the previous year.

Following the first round of water discharge, the second phase of Japan’s “water discharge into the sea” began on the morning of October 5th, with the total volume and duration of the second discharge identical to the first. On October 16th, Russia released a statement announcing temporary restrictions on the import of fish and other aquatic products from Japan, effective immediately.

After Japan officially initiated the “water discharge into the sea,” many countries, including China, continued to implement import bans on seafood products from Fukushima and related areas, causing strong dissatisfaction from the Japanese government. According to Reuters, on September 4th, the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a statement declaring that China’s import restrictions imposed following Japan’s discharge of nuclear-contaminated water into the sea were “completely unacceptable” and strongly urged China to withdraw these measures in a submission to the World Trade Organization (WTO).

In response to Japan’s reaction, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin stated that China’s competent authorities had taken emergency measures for aquatic products originating from Japan in full compliance with Chinese laws and regulations, as well as relevant provisions of the WTO’s Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures.

He emphasized that China’s actions were entirely legitimate, reasonable, and necessary. Ministry of Commerce spokesperson Hua Chunying also pointed out that China had repeatedly expressed its strong concerns and objections regarding Japan’s Fukushima nuclear-contaminated water discharge issue, both in WTO meetings and trade policy reviews with Japan, but the Japanese government continued to act unilaterally by initiating the discharge.

Hua Chunying stressed that China consistently supports the multilateral trading system with the WTO at its core and abides by WTO rules. Japan should engage in self-reflection and immediately cease the global transfer of nuclear contamination risks.

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China: Zero Import of Seafood from Japan in September

(source:internet, reference only)

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