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China's Imports of GE Soybeans Likely to Decrease

China's Imports of GE Soybeans
Likely to Decrease

AFX - Asia
January 22, 2002

China imports of GM farm products seen falling this year on impact of new
rules

BEIJING

Imports of genetically-modified farm products could
fall this year due to the implementation of new government regulations on
genetically-modified organisms, the Business Weekly reported, citing Tang
Yanli, a senior official with the Ministry of Agriculture's Information
Centre.

The fall could also lead to rising soybean prices on the domestic market
between April and June as the impact of implementation, which goes into
effect on March 20, hits the market, Tang said.

GM products including soybeans, corn, rape seed, cotton, tomatoes and
vegetable oil will be the first to be affected by the new regulations,
details of which were only announced two weeks ago although outline rules
were published last June, the paper said.

The biggest GMO exporters to China are the US, Argentina, Canada and
Australia.

"It will cost traders more and take them longer to get GMO products
labelled, obtain safety certificates, approval documents and pay quarantine
fees," Tang said.

"Thus it will bring about a wider price gap between GMO and non-GMO
products, which is presently around 15-20 pct," and could result in a fall
in GMO imports this year.

Tang said although China is expected to import substantial shipments of
soybeans this year, volumes are likely to be lower than in 2001 and
2000.

Customs figures show soybean imports were 12.8 mln tons in the first 10
months of last year and 10.42 mln tons in 2000, the paper said.

"Soybean prices on the domestic market might pick up between April and June
as imports are likely to fall after implementation of the new rules on
March 20," Tang added.

For more information and to contact AFX: www.afxnews.com and
www.afxpress.com


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