Statement by Acting Agriculture Secretary Chuck Conner Regarding Indonesia and Barbados Allowing Full Market Access for Beef and Beef Products in Line with International Standards
Jan. 23, 2008
"I am pleased today to announce that Indonesia and Barbados have fully complied with international trade standards regarding beef and beef products by allowing complete market access for U.S. beef and beef products of all ages. I applaud the Indonesian and Barbados ministries of agriculture for making a decision that is based on science and in line with international guidelines. This shows that constructive and steady discussions with our trading partners are bearing positive results for future U.S. beef exports.
"Indonesia is setting a standard for other Asian nations by agreeing to import U.S. beef and beef products consistent with World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) guidelines. Much like our recent agreement with the Philippines in November, this agreement with Indonesia emphasizes that we will continue to press for full market access for U.S. beef and beef products of all ages throughout the Pacific Rim.
"We are equally optimistic about what this agreement means for U.S. beef exports to the Caribbean region. Barbados possesses one of the strongest economies in the entire Caribbean and enjoys some of the largest per capita incomes. Moreover, tourism accounts for more than half of the gross domestic product (GDP) in Barbados. With this agreement, Barbados and Indonesia signal their determination to be guided by the same international standards that help to deliver top quality cuts of U.S. beef and beef products to consumers and retailers around the world.
"More than 100 countries now allow the entry of at least some U.S. beef and beef products, a result of intensive efforts by USDA to regain market access. Exports of these products to Indonesia reached a high of $17 million in 2005 with partial market access. Under this new agreement, USDA estimates that U.S. beef exports to Indonesia could potentially double in 2008 and 2009. Exports of U.S. beef and beef products to Barbados were roughly $2.7 million in 2007 (January - November) with partial market access."