Cabinet OKs temporary removal of import duties on egg products

SEOUL-- South Korea's Cabinet on Tuesday approved a measure to remove import tariffs on egg products in the latest effort to resolve a supply shortage sparked by outbreaks of bird flu here, officials said.

The move will allow local companies to import 28,000 tons of eggs -- 13,000 tons of shell eggs and 600 tons of hatching eggs and 14,400 tons of other products -- without tariffs up until the end of this year.

The government said egg products can be brought in from Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, the Netherlands, Thailand and Spain.

The temporary lifting of tariffs is set to begin around mid-August when the measure is carried in a government gazette.

The latest decision -- the second such move in 2017 -- is part of South Korea's efforts to stabilize prices of eggs that have risen sharply in recent months following two outbreaks of a bird flu that have ravaged chicken farms across the country since November.

South Korea lifted tariffs on 98,600 tons of eggs imported between early January and June 30.

South Korean quarantine officials have slaughtered more than 38 million poultry, including 25.2 million egg-laying hens, a move that has reduced the country's daily egg output by about 30 percent, according to government data.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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