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Joint Statement by the United States and South Africa on Agricultural Trade

Paris, France U.S. and South Africa industry and government officials met in Paris for two days of talks on agricultural and broader trade matters. 

U.S. and South African government officials and industries met in Paris on June 4 and 5 to address outstanding agricultural trade issues related to South Africa’s AGOA eligibility.

The United States and South Africa are pleased to announce that in joint meetings, the two industries have agreed on the framework to provide for renewed market access for U.S. bone-in chicken into the South African market.   The Governments also agreed to a firm set of actions this month to resolve the remaining sanitary issues related to poultry, pork, and beef. 

The framework provides for the return of exports to South Africa of U.S. bone-in chicken after the two governments complete necessary implementation steps.   The South African government will implement the framework following a public consultation process. 

While both sides recognize it may take some time for the South African government to complete its regulatory process, both sides are committed to expedite processes and resume shipments of U.S. chicken as quickly as possible. Both Governments and industries have committed to further engagements on development issues that will enhance production in South Africa as well as participation of Historically Disadvantaged Individuals (HDIs) into the poultry industry.  

The South African delegation was led by Ambassador Faizel Ismail and included senior officials of the Departments of Trade and Industry and the Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.  The South African Poultry Association CEO Kevin Lovell was joined by South African poultry producers.  The U.S. delegation was led by U.S. Ambassador to South Africa Patrick H. Gaspard, accompanied by senior officials from the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Mike Brown, President of the National Chicken Council, and Jim Sumner, President of the USA Poultry & Egg Export Council represented the U.S. industry.  

The Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr. Rob Davies who was in Paris met with the delegations. Minister stated that “the framework agreed by the two industries facilitates South Africa’s continued participation in AGOA and is a commendable effort by the poultry industry in the interest of the South African economy.”

Ambassador Gaspard stated, “The Paris meetings made significant progress.  The United States and South Africa can work together to address trade issues, demonstrating that U.S. trade tools can effectively deliver results for the United States.  I am happy with the progress towards a mutually agreed solution that we made, and look forward to our working together to resolve bilateral trade problems.”

This agreement will allow the two governments to set a positive path forward for the countries’ trade and investment relationship building two-way U.S.-South Africa trade, including under AGOA, and using tools such as the U.S.-South Africa Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) to address the outstanding issues.