China approves Brazilian exports of GM soy for five years

17 March 2006

Brasilia, Brazil, 17 March – The Brazilian government said Thursday that the Chinese authorities had authorized Brazil to continue exporting genetically modified (GM) soy to China over the next five years.

The decision was made after a Brazilian mission to China negotiated a longer deadline for certification of Brazilian soy with the Chinese Agriculture Ministry as previously permission for exports was granted on a yearly basis.

The International Relations secretariat of the Ministry of Agriculture (MAPA) in Brazil said that with immediate effect China had authorized Brazil to continue exporting GM soy.

“We managed to get the maximum their legislation will allow. That decision provides greater predictability for Brazilian soy exports to China,” said Denise Mariano, MAPA’s Coordinator of Bilateral Agreements, who was part of the mission to China between March 6 and 9.

Soy exports account for around 25 percent of Brazil’s total exports to China.

According to the Chinese authorities, approximately 30 percent of all the soy imported by the country comes from Brazil.

In 2005, Brazil exported a total of US$1.7 billion in soy beans to China.

The production of GM crops began in Brazil in 2004 when the government provisionally authorized the cultivation of GM soy.

More than 100,000 farmers in Brazil grow GM soy.(macauhub)