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Failing to protect Philippines people’s health, corrupt Philippines government lifts restrictions on importing Fukushima food

Having lived many years in the Philippines and experienced how badly corrupt the Philippines government is at every level and in every department, to me this decision comes as no surprise. The only question is how much? How much was paid as a bribe, beside the  agreement for Japan to provide a low-interest loan of up to 4.4 billion yen ($40 million) to reinforce major bridges in Manila?

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Philippines lifts restrictions on importing Fukushima food

January 09 2020

MANILA – Philippine Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin said Thursday his country has lifted restrictions on Japanese food imports imposed following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster due to lower risks of radioactive contamination.

Locsin said during a meeting with his Japanese counterpart Toshimitsu Motegi in Manila that the Philippines had eliminated the need for radiation test results for shipments of some types of seafood and agricultural products from Fukushima and its surrounding areas on Wednesday.

“I look forward to safe Japanese food reaching many of the people of the Philippines,” Motegi told a joint press briefing after the meeting.

The Southeast Asian country had required the test for beef and vegetables from Fukushima and Ibaraki, as well as seafood from the two prefectures along with Tochigi and Gunma following the March 2011 triple meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, triggered by a powerful earthquake and tsunami.

A total of 54 countries and regions took such measures following the crisis. With the announcement by the Philippines, that number falls to 20, with the United States, China and South Korea among countries maintaining restrictions of some kind, according to the farm ministry.

Motegi and Locsin also agreed to step up security cooperation, with an eye to countering China’s militarization of artificial islands in disputed parts of the South China Sea, as well as on boosting economic cooperation including on infrastructure development.

Following the meeting, the two signed an agreement for Japan to provide a low-interest loan of up to 4.4 billion yen ($40 million) to reinforce major bridges in Manila.

https://news.abs-cbn.com/business/01/09/20/philippines-lift-restrictions-on-importing-fukushima-food

DA removes post-Fukushima requirements on Japanese produce

January 9, 2020

THE Department of Agriculture (DA) said it removed the radiation analysis requirement on selected Japanese commodities for import to the Philippines.

In memorandum order no. 1, series of 2020, Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar said that the “certificate of radiation analysis and certificate of origin for the importation of Japanese commodities are no longer required.”

The Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Standards (BAFS) had been ordered to conduct a food safety risk assessment of radionuclide in commodities which include fish, beef, apples, and pears from Japan.

The food safety risk assessment concludes that there is no significant food safety threat on fish, apple, pear, and beef imported from Japan,” it said.

In 2011, Japan was hit by a magnitude-9 earthquake and a tsunami, which destroyed the cooling systems at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. This caused reactors to melt down and emit radiation into the air, soil, and sea.

The DA issued memorandum order no. 12, series of 2011, which requires plants, planting materials, and plant products originating from the Fukushima area to have certificate of radiation analysis. It also required certificates of origin for other imports from other prefectures.

Memorandum order no. 14, series of 2011 requires dairy products and animal feed imports not from Fukushima and Ibaraki to have a certificate of origin and a certificate of declaration. — Vincent Mariel P. Galang

https://www.bworldonline.com/da-removes-post-fukushima-requirements-on-japanese-produce/

 

January 12, 2020 Posted by | Fukushima 2020 | , , | Leave a comment

Philippines lifts ban on Fukushima fish imports

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Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol says the lifting of the ban is a gesture of goodwill as the Philippines also seeks to increase the market access of its agriculture exports to Japan
BAN LIFTED. The Department of Agriculture lifts the 7-year import ban on fish coming from Fukushima prefecture in Japan, which was affected by the nuclear power plant meltdown in 2011
May 29, 2019
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines lifted the import ban on a number of fish species coming from Japan’s Fukushima prefecture after 7 years, according to Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol.
In a Facebook post on Wednesday, May 29, Piñol said the order, which approves the proposal of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), serves as a “gesture of goodwill” between Japan and the Philippines.
The Philippines imposed the ban on importing cherry salmon, sand lance, Japanese dace, and ayu or sweetfish in 2012, after the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant meltdown in 2011.
“I consider the ban, issued by the previous administration, as just a bureaucratic goobbledygook and an overreaction to an issue which did not really affect the Philippines,” Piñol said.
In turn, the Department of Agriculture also hopes to improve the market access of the Philippines’ agriculture exports to Japan by seeking lower tariffs for bananas and pineapples.
Piñol also said they are pushing for the entry of Hass avocado into Japan. (READ: DTI expects $5 billion in signed deals from Duterte’s Japan trip)
The lifting of the ban coincided with President Rodrigo Duterte’s visit to Japan for Nikkei’s 25th International Conference on the Future of Asia, where he has brought along 200 other delegates. (READ: Duterte promises Japanese businessmen he’ll ‘kill’ their problems) – Rappler.com

June 10, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , , | Leave a comment

Japan asks Philippines to lift ban on Fukushima products

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June 6, 2018,
The Japanese government is asking the Philippines to lift the restrictions it imposed on the importation of agricultural and other food products coming from areas affected by the March 2011 Fukushima nuclear meltdown.
Mitsuhiro Miyakoshi, Special Advisor to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and in charge of promoting the export of Japanese agricultural products, relayed this message to the Philippine government during a three-day official visit in Manila last week.
In his meeting with Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Pinol, Miyakoshi noted that the European Union has already lifted some regulations on certain products that include agricultural and fisheries, “based on comprehensive scientific data and analyses.”
Citing the increasing demand for consumption of Japanese products in the country, the government of Japan is eyeing a total of JY1 trillion (PhP47 billion) annual exports to the Philippines until the end of 2019.
In a statement, the Japanese Embassy in Manila said both the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) and the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) are working on several policies related to export promotion in order to facilitate the freer flow of Japanese products to the Philippines.
At the sidelines of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit in Manila last November, Prime Minister Abe also asked the countries in the region to consider accepting imports of food from the affected areas, noting that sufficient time had passed since the earthquake and the food are widely considered safe.
In the aftermath of the 2011 nuclear incident triggered by the earthquake-borne tsunami in the eastern coast of Japan, many countries, including the Philippines, introduced restrictions on agricultural and other food products from areas near the Fukushima power plant.
Some countries and regions have since then eased the restrictions following widespread clean-up and decontamination conducted by Japan.
Alongside with the discussion on the lifting of restrictions of products from Fukushima and nearby prefectures, Miyakoshi also discussed with Pinol the updates on rice production and harvest in the Philippines and Japan, as well as the possible infusion of Japanese development assistance in these areas.
Miyakoshi, together with Ambassador Koji Haneda, also held a meeting with representatives of Japanese companies doing business in the Philippines to discuss ways to further promote exports of Japanese agricultural products.
“Miyakoshi underscored the importance of this matter to Japan, and that the Japanese Government is now exerting its best efforts to increase export in the nearest future,” the Embassy said in the statement.

June 7, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima 2018 | , , | Leave a comment