(Yicai Global) July 9 -- China has recently lifted the ban on salmon imports from some Norwegian counties, which may contribute to a surge in the Scandinavian nation's imports from the second half, Sigmund Bjoergo, the Norwegian Seafood Council's country director in China, told state news outlet The Paper.
The Chinese government had barred imports of whole salmon from three Norwegian counties -- Sor-Trondelag, Nordland and Troms -- from March 2015 over virus concerns. The ban covered 40 percent of overall Norwegian output of the farmed fish. The remaining counties can export to China only after certifying their lox harbors no infectious salmon anemia.
Prior to the ban, China's imports of chilled Norwegian salmon made up 32 percent of total imports in 2014 -- the largest share of any nation. The country's largest source of salmon imports the next year became the Faroe Islands, a self-governing territory of Denmark lying between Iceland and Norway, while the latter slipped to sixth on the list.
The Chinese government led a team to check the safety of Norwegian salmon earlier this year. After several months of effective dialog between the two, Beijing finally decided to cancel the import ban, Bjoergo said, adding ISA only afflicts animals, not humans.
Norwegian salmon exports to China grew almost six-fold annually to 7,054 metric tons in the first half, riding a wave of rising consumption in the country. Exports in the second half will be three times those of the first, Bjoergo predicts, further buoyed by the cancelled ban.
Editor: Ben Armour