The National Pork Producers Council has called on the Obama Administration to “slow the WTO accession process” for the Russian Federation until U.S. pork plants are relisted. NPPC also wants Russia to sign an “equivalence” agreement with the United States.
In a letter to President Obama, NPPC urged the administration to press Russia to relist all U.S. pork facilities as a condition for U.S. approval of its accession to the WTO.
In question are 34 U.S. pork production, processing and storage facilities Russia has “delisted” or failed to relist, meaning 40 to 50 percent of all U.S. pork production is ineligible for export to the country.
Russia has not identified health or sanitary reasons for its actions, which violates obligations contained in a 2006 side agreement that is part of World Trade Organization bilateral negotiations between the two countries.
“If Russia wants to join the WTO, it needs to play by the rules and stop its blatant actions to restrict U.S. pork,” said Don Butler, NPPC president. “Russia should accept our inspection system as being at least as good as its system.”