GENET archive

[Index][Thread]

6-Regulation: Monsanto still working with China on soy approvals



-----------------------
genet-news mailing list
-----------------------

                                  PART I
-------------------------------- GENET-news --------------------------------

TITLE:  Monsanto still working with China on soy approvals
SOURCE: Reuters
DATE:   Feb 24, 2003

------------------ archive: http://www.gene.ch/genet.html ------------------


Monsanto still working with China on soy approvals

St. LOUIS, Mo. - Monsanto Co last week confirmed market talk that China
had denied the company a permanent safety certificate for imports of
genetically modified soybeans into the country.

The company made application in March 2002 for permanent safety
certification to replace temporary certificates now in place that support
$1 billion in U.S. soybean exports to China each year. But the March
application was recently turned down, Monsanto spokeswoman Jill
Montgomery told Reuters.

Company officials have been meeting with Chinese officials to address
safety concerns associated with genetically modified crops. Interim
certificates remain in force, Montgomery said.

"We've been working with the Chinese government to understand what needs
they have for understanding the safety of soybeans, given that it has
been imported into the country for several years now," Montgomery said.

Phillip Laney, American Soybean Association country director in China,
last week told reporters in a press briefing that the latest denial by
China was not a significant setback for efforts to open up markets.

"It was actually just a blip in the road," said Laney. "We believe...the
Chinese government wants Monsanto and other biotech companies to go ahead
and complete a series of two sets of field trials for each of the biotech
varieties they would like to register.

"We of course, feel that these tests are totally unnecessary, but in fact
the Chinese law requires them and I guess it's just one of the hoops that
Monsanto is going to have to jump through."

That echoed comments by U.S. Trade Representative Robert Zoellick, who
told reporters in Beijing on Feb. 17 after trade talks with the Chinese
he had made headway on the soy issue.

"I don't want to be premature in saying the problem is solved, but I got
a very positive response and we have to follow up on the details,"
Zoellick said after meeting Vice Premier Wen Jiabao and Trade Minister
Shi Guangsheng.