Morocco agrees to accept US poultry

The agreement reverses Morocco’s previous ban on US poultry. (Shutterstock)
Updated 07 August 2018
0

Morocco agrees to accept US poultry

  • The agreement reverses Morocco’s previous ban on US poultry that was based on food safety concerns
  • The announcement comes at a time when many US farmers are feeling pressure from retaliatory tariffs

WASHINGTON: Morocco has agreed to accept imports of American poultry products for the first time, the US Trade Representative’s office and the US Department of Agriculture said on Tuesday, estimating initial annual shipments at about $10 million.
The agreement reverses Morocco’s previous ban on US poultry that was based on food safety concerns despite a free trade agreement between the two countries.
USTR and USDA said the two agencies had worked with the Moroccan government “to provide assurances on the safety of US poultry.”
They estimated that Morocco would be a $10 million market for US poultry initially, with additional growth over time.
“I am convinced that when the Moroccan people get a taste of US poultry, they’re going to want more of it,” US Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said in a statement, adding that it was a top priority for the Trump administration to open new markets for agricultural products.
The United States is the world’s second-largest poultry exporter after Brazil, with global sales of poultry meat and products of $4.3 billion last year.
The announcement comes at a time when many US farmers are feeling pressure from retaliatory tariffs on US agricultural products that have been levied by China, the European Union, Canada, Mexico and other countries in response to Washington’s tariffs on steel, aluminum and $34 billion worth of Chinese goods.


Urgency needed to boost Palestinian economy: IMF chief

Updated 26 June 2019
0

Urgency needed to boost Palestinian economy: IMF chief

  • The MF has been warning of severe deterioration in the Palestinian economy
  • ‘If there is an economic plan, if there is urgency, it’s a question of making sure that the momentum is sustained’

MANAMA: IMF chief Christine Lagarde said Wednesday that major economic growth was possible in the Palestinian territories if all sides showed urgency, as she took part in a US-led conference boycotted by the Palestinian leadership.
The International Monetary Fund has been warning of severe deterioration in the Palestinian economy, with tax revenue blocked in a dispute with Israel which has also imposed a crippling blockade on the Gaza Strip for more than a decade.
“If there is an economic plan, if there is urgency, it’s a question of making sure that the momentum is sustained,” said Lagarde.
The IMF chief is attending a conference in Bahrain to discuss the economic aspects of a United States plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace, which has already been rejected by the Palestinians as it fails to address key political issues.
Lagarde said for the US plan to work “it will require all the goodwill in the world on the part of all parties — private sector, public sector, international organizations and the parties on the ground and their neighbors.”
Citing examples of post-conflict countries, Lagarde said that private investors needed progress in several sectors including strengthening the central bank, better managing public finance and mobilizing domestic revenue.
“If anti-corruption is really one of the imperatives of the authorities — as it was in Rwanda, for instance — then things can really take off,” she said.
The plan presented by White House adviser Jared Kushner calls for $50 billion of investment in the Palestinian territories and its neighbors within a decade.
The proposals for infrastructure, tourism, education and more aim to create one million Palestinian jobs.
Gross domestic product in the Gaza Strip declined by eight percent last year, while there was only minor growth in the West Bank.
Kushner, opening the conference on Tuesday, called the plan the “Opportunity of the Century” — and said the Palestinians needed to accept it before a deal can be reached on political solutions.
The Palestinian Authority has rejected the conference, saying that the US and Israel are trying to dangle money to impose their ideas on a political settlement.
Washington says it will unveil the political aspects of its peace deal at a later date, most likely after Israel’s September election.