BEIJING (Reuters) - Chinese and U.S. officials met on Friday to discuss quarantine issues regarding imports of various agriculture products into both countries, China’s General Administration of Customs said in a brief statement on its website on Tuesday.
Deputy Commissioner of Customs Zhang Jiwen met with U.S. Under Secretary of Agriculture Ted McKinney and discussed access for Chinese cooked poultry products, citrus fruits and date exports as well as U.S. exports to China of poultry, rice, feed additives and other products, the statement said.
The meeting was held at the same time as high-level talks took place between the two trade partners in Washington aimed at averting a trade war.
Sources have told Reuters that the two sides are now close to reaching a deal that would remove an existing U.S. order banning American companies from supplying Chinese telecommunications equipment maker ZTE Corp.
The deal could also include China removing tariffs on imported U.S. agricultural products, as well as buying more U.S. farm goods.
China has been seeking U.S. market access for cooked Chinese poultry for years while the United States wants China to lift a ban in place on U.S. poultry imports for more than three years following an outbreak of bird flu there.
China has sharply reduced its imports of many U.S. animal feed materials because of quarantine issues such as the use of genetically modified organisms.
Reporting by Dominique Patton; editing by Christian Schmollinger and Jason Neely