Monday, August 06, 2012 -
Kyrgyz agriculture officials are preparing for the possibility of Kazakhstan imposing a ban on Kyrgyz meat and dairy products, they said on Monday.
Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev is slated to visit the Kyrgyz government later this month to discuss a variety of topics with Kyrgyz leaders, namely the construction of oil pipelines between the two countries.
However, agriculture will also be on the agenda, as the poor state of Kyrgyz agriculture and livestock has raised concerns in Kazakhstan, Deputy Kyrgyz Agriculture Minister Muslim Umiryaev said on Monday.
“Currently, meat and dairy products are delivered to Kazakhstan by 10 enterprises in Kyrgyzstan,” the Knews.kg agency reported Umiryaev as saying.
“However, Kazakhstan may impose a ban on the imports of these products, because of the situation of FMD [foot-and-mouth disease] in Kyrgyzstan is not good.”
As of June 2012, 4,000 Kyrgyz livestock succumbed to the deadly virus, in a strain that is particularly virulent given that it has infected even vaccinated animals.
Kazakhstan is particularly concerned about the potential spread of the disease, given its membership in the Customs Union with Belarus and Russia which places stringent standards on livestock and agriculture.
Whether or not Kazakhstan will ban Kyrgyz meat and dairy exports will depend on how negotiations go, the deputy minister said.