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Suspension of anti-dumping duties on chicken welcomed

───   ELSABÉ RICHARD 05:30 Wed, 03 Aug 2022

Suspension of anti-dumping duties on chicken welcomed | News Article
PHOTO: GALLO.

The South African government has suspended anti-dumping duties on chicken from countries such as Brazil, Spain, Denmark, Ireland, and Poland, for a year.

The South African Meat Importers and Exporters Association (AMIE) has welcomed the suspension, and marked it as a major win for South Africans, who are already feeling the brunt of high food and fuel prices. 

This twelve-month anti-dumping duties suspension was published in the Government Gazette on Monday 1 August 2022.

The CEO of the association, Paul Matthew, shared in a statement released by AMIE that, “the suspension of additional tariffs on chicken imported from these five countries is a first step in the right direction, and we hope to see more of this sort of action from the government in future.

“Governments around the world have been slashing import tariffs as a way to help their citizens survive. Mexico, the Philippines, and South Korea have removed tariffs on imported goods, including chicken, to curb and mitigate the impact of rising inflation on their people. The US is currently considering scrapping its tariffs on various goods for exactly the same reason.

“The liberalisation of trade policies can help consumers. The opposite is true of localisation and protectionist policies because they restrict competition, which leads to an increase in the price of local goods.

“We welcome that Government has recognised that the timing and extent of these policies need careful consideration, and has suspended the implementation of tariffs for 12 months. It shows that Government is putting its citizens first, which is exactly how it should be.”

Meanwhile, Izaak Breitenbach, General Manager of the South African Poultry Association (SAPA)’s Broiler Organisation, told OFM News that the poultry industry is threatened by the non-renewal of tariffs. This is after temporary anti-dumping duties expired in June this year.

Breitenbach emphasised that: “South Africa is currently open to predatory trade from [countries like Brazil, Ireland, Spain and Denmark], and the progress that’s been made to achieve the objectives of the Poultry Sector Master Plan is under threat.

“Allowing dumping to continue undermines the pillars of the Poultry Sector Master Plan, and severely compromises and endangers South Africa’s poultry industry – a R56 billion strategic economic asset.

“Like we’ve seen from African countries to the north, Ghana, Senegal, and Cameroon, dumping can readily destroy an industry. Without these tariffs in place, we could witness the systematic dismantling of South Africa’s poultry industry, leading to massive job losses, and severe economic contraction.

“Dumping jeopardises the country’s food security and the lack of import tariffs to counter it can cost jobs, which in turn will increase poverty and hunger.”

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