Those wor­ry­ing about US beef im­ports have big hats, no cat­tle

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - COMMENT - AS PART OF THE 100-DAY ACTION PLAN

inked dur­ing Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping and US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s meet­ing in Florida in April, China is once again al­low­ing im­ports of US beef. Bei­jing News com­ments:

The US beef be­ing sold in China on e-com­merce sites and in su­per­mar­kets is priced around 100 yuan ($15) to 300 yuan per kilo­gram, which is twice the price of do­mes­tic beef.

But most of it has been fresh, rather than frozen, so it was trans­ported to China by air, which pushed the price up.

Thus some beef pro­duc­ers in China worry that as more frozen US beef is shipped to China by sea, its price will de­cline to that of do­mes­tic beef, or even lower.

Such wor­ries are surely un­founded, beef from Australia, Uruguay, New Zealand, Brazil and Ar­gentina is al­ready sold in China.

The re­struc­tur­ing of the cat­tle in­dus­try and re­lated pro­cess­ing in­dus­tries has been un­der­way since then. Com­pe­ti­tion se­lects the su­pe­rior and elim­i­nates the in­fe­rior, thus the US beef

im­ports will make the Chi­nese in­dus­try more ef­fi­cient.

The back­yard free-range cat­tle rais­ers have al­ready largely dis­ap­peared given their low ef­fi­ciency and lack of qual­ity con­trol pro­ce­dures.

Af­ter China en­tered the World Trade Or­ga­ni­za­tion in 2001, a pre­vail­ing worry at home was China’s tex­tile and auto in­dus­tries would col­lapse. Yet, af­ter a painstak­ing in­dus­trial ad­just­ment, the two in­dus­tries have be­come more com­pet­i­tive than be­fore. They not only sur­vived, but are also com­pet­ing in for­eign mar­kets.

It is the same now. The cat­tle farm­ing and beef pro­cess­ing en­ter­prises that sur­vive the com­pe­ti­tion will do so based on their scale and the qual­ity of their prod­ucts.

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