Zhi Shuping visits Canada and Cuba: promote national strategy with inspection and quarantine cooperation

  In conjunction with the state visit of Chinese Premier Li Keqiang to Canada and Cuba, AQSIQ Minister Zhi Shuping led a delegation to Canada and Cuba from September 21 to 29, 2016 at the invitation of Canadian Minister of Agriculture and Agri-food and the Cuban Minister of Science, Technology and Environment. Zhi Shuping attended all major activities of Premier Li Keqiang’s visit, signed 11 cooperation agreements in the area of inspection and quarantine, and achieved 12 positive results, including both cooperation framework agreements and protocols on inspection and quarantine access of specific products concerning Canadian bone-in beef as well Chinese pear produced in Shanxi Province and Chinese stuffed grain products, covering areas ranging from national quality infrastructure, animal and plant quarantine, import and export food safety, consumer safety to standardization.  

  Witnessed by Premier Li Keqiang and Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau, Zhi Shuping signed with Canadian Minister of Agriculture and Agri-food, Mr. MacAulay  the protocol on the sanitary requirement of Canadian bone-in beef. Zhi Shuping and MacAulay also conducted bilateral discussions and signed agreements concerning Canadian canola, Chinese pear and stuffed grain products, which further enhanced China-Canada strategic cooperation. The quarantine issue of Canadian canola is the priority concern of both the Canadian government agencies including Canadian Prime Minister and is a hot spot for Canadian media and industry, and is of vital importance for the bilateral relations and trade. The delegation had conducted round-the-clock discussion with the Canadian colleagues and thus laid a good foundation for the official meeting between Premier Li Keqiang and the Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau. Both leaders sang highly of the AQSIQ delegation for their scientific and prudent work, and commented that their work was conducive to the overall bilateral relations and to the construction of the China-Canada Free Trade Area.  

  Witnessed by Premier Li Keqiang and Cuban President of the Council of State and Council of Ministers Raul Castro, Zhi Shuping signed the first ever agreement concerning foreign cooperation on national quality infrastructure with the Cuban Minister of Science, Technology and Environment. According to this agreement, AQSIQ will provide training and assistance to Cuba in the areas of metrology, standards, certification and accreditation, and testing and inspection, to help Cuba to improve its technical capacity. In bilateral Ministerial discussions, agreements were inked covering cooperation in the areas of animal and plant quarantine, import and export food safety, aquaculture and the training and application of quarantine dogs, which will further bilateral inspection and quarantine cooperation, help to promote the bilateral traditional friendship and serve the economic development of Cuba.  

  During the visit, the delegation conducted all-together 11 ministerial discussions with the Agriculture and Agri-food Canada, Health Canada, Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada, Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Standards Council of Canada, Dairy Council of Canada, and the Cuban Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Food and Industry, the Cuban Customs and Ministry of Foreign Trade. Zhi Shuping also listened to the work report of CCIC Canada and the Mexico Office of CCIC North America, and instructed them to further improve their awareness of innovation and marketing, improve competitiveness, provide better service and do a good job in the communication and cooperation in the inspection and quarantine area. While in Cuba, Zhi Shuping also talked with the diplomat in the Economic and Commercial Counsellor's Office who was from the inspection and quarantine system and encouraged her to do a good job.     

  Officials from Department of Supervision on Animal and Plant Quarantine, Import and Export Food Safety Bureau and International Cooperation Department of AQSIQ accompanied the visit.