The Ministers of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, Ms. Thoko Didiza and Trade Industry and Competition Ebrahim Patel have welcomed the decision by the People’s Republic of China to lift restrictions on SA Wool products due to the outbreak of Foot and Mouth.
South Africa produces over 42 million killograms of wool from 8000 commercial sheep farmers. Additional to this number of commercial farmers, there are 40 000 communal smallholder farmers who contribute 14% of the total wool exports. These farmers would have suffered an irrecoverable loss of R730 million if the restrictions continued. The wool export industry is worth R1 billion. This ban on wool, which was harvested in the last season, would have irrecoverably dented the wool industry since this year’s harvesting is in full swing. This means the industry would have had to incur losses of two seasons.
“We welcome the decision by the General Administration of Customs of China (GACC) and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs of China to lift the ban on the wool and other cloven-hoofed animals’ skin products imported from South Africa as announced today” said Minister Didiza
“The engagements with the People’s Republic of China have been conducted in a positive manner and the coordinated efforts by different parts of the SA government greatly assisted” said Minister Patel