WASHINGTON – During the 22nd meeting of the US-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT) held in China Nov. 20-21, positive outcomes were achieved on a wide range of issues according to the Office of the US Trade Representatives Office and USDA.

Regarding agricultural cooperation, the JCCT reported USDA and China’s Ministry of Agriculture and General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine are finalizing the framework of a five-year strategic plan focused on food security, food safety and sustainable agriculture to build a stronger foundation for critical cooperation in agriculture.

Progress was also made in discussions with China’s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, on beef market access, USDA further reported. Both parties agreed to expand discussions beyond technical to the conditions that include the scope of products available in the market. China also committed to making progress on removing avian influenza-related bans affecting several US states, to finalize work on a longstanding market access request for US pears, and the complete work on a new dairy certificate to maintain existing market access.

Secretary of Commerce John Bryson and US Trade Representative Ron Kirk, who co-chaired the JCCT along with Chinese Vice Premier Wang Qishan, and Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack were among officials participating in the JCCT meeting.

“China is one of the most important agricultural trade partners for the United States and the meetings and discussions in recent days have helped to strengthen this partnership and build greater export opportunities for our farmers, ranchers, and growers,” Vilsack said. “We intend to continue these discussions in the months ahead on beef and other agricultural products to break down additional trade barriers so Chinese consumers can benefit from the high quality products that are produced in America.”

Bryson, Kirk and Vilsack said there was meaningful progress on key elements of the US-China trade relationship, but they added more work is needed to open China’s market to US exports and investment. Progress will help boost US exports and jobs through the removal of important barriers related to electric vehicles, strengthened measures to eliminate discriminatory indigenous innovation policies and stricter enforcement of intellectual property rights in China, they added.