Spain hit hard by China’s investigation into pork imports

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The Chinese government is investigating possible damage to domestic production due to the import of pork from the European Union. Spain is the largest party affected. This research follows shortly after the EU announced that it would impose tariffs on Chinese electric vehicles.

According to data from Interporc, the Spanish trade association for the pig sector, Spain accounted for almost 21% of China’s total pork imports. Spain exported more than 560,000 tons of pork to China last year. These exports had a value of more than €1.2 billion. This makes Spain the largest supplier of pork to China, ahead of the United States, Brazil, the Netherlands and Canada.

Details of the study

China’s Ministry of Commerce issued an official notice confirming the investigation. This investigation was requested by the Chinese pork industry, a few days before the announcement of the EU tariffs. Although the application was submitted earlier, the investigation is now actually starting and will take at least a year. It focuses on the impact of the import of fresh, chilled and frozen pork and by-products such as innards and fat. It will cover the period from January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2023.

Possible consequences

Chinese companies wishing to participate in the survey are asked to submit economic data and details on the origin of the products. The ministry announces that it will carry out questionnaires, random checks and inspections at various companies. Although the document does not mention specific measures, the results of the study could lead to restrictions or additional tariffs on the import of pork from the EU. This could have a major impact on Spanish exports and put serious pressure on the country’s market position.

The Spanish government and the pork industry will closely monitor developments and may take steps to minimise the impact and explore alternative markets.

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