17:26 GMT19 October 2020
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    Canadian Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau has told Reuters that department officials have told her that two Quebec-based pork producers have had their export permits to China revoked.

    In an interview with Reuters on Wednesday, Bibeau said she has not yet received an official notice from China of the permit suspensions and would not identify the companies involved. She added that she did not know when the pork permit suspensions took effect.

    "We have to look into this. It might be only administrative. We might be able to deal with the situation easily. I can't speculate on why the permits have been suspended," she said in a phone interview.

    Canadian Pork Council spokesperson Gary Stordy also told CBC News that the council was aware of the suspensions and was seeking clarification on the issue in order to correct it.

    "We are aware that China has suspended two plants. They are temporarily unable to ship pork into China. This appears to be linked to a paperwork issue," he said.

    A spokesperson in Bibeau's office told CBC News that the Canadian government has not received official confirmation from Customs China, nor has the federal government been given a reason for the action. The spokesperson also said that the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) was working with industry earlier this week to sort out language and format issues on some export certificates used to export meat to China.

    READ MORE: Ex-CIA Officer Pleads Guilty to Conspiring to Deliver US Intel to China — DOJ

    The suspension came amid a series of measures taken by China after Canadian police arrested Huawei Technologies executive Meng Wanzhou due to a US warrant back in December 2018. Since then, China has arrested two Canadians and halted canola imports from two Canadian companies.


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