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Estonia increasing its presence in China

15. November 2018 - 12:36
Minister of Rural Affairs Tarmo Tamm visiting China.
Photo: Eveli Post / Ministry of Rural Affairs.

Estonia took part of the China International Import Expo on 3-8 November 2018. The official delegation was headed by Minister of Rural Affairs Tarmo Tamm, who met with Minister of Agriculture of China, Mr Han Changfu, the leaders of the General Administration of Customs and local entrepreneurs, as well as introduced Estonian flavours to the locals.

“While developing export we have to make sure that the state supports entrepreneurship in order to encourage economic ties between countries. My visit as minister and our meeting with the Minister of Agriculture of China reiterates the fact that both Estonia and its entrepreneurs are interested in long-term cooperation,” Minister Tamm said.

On 5 November, Minister Tarmo Tamm met with his Chinese colleague, Minister Han Changfu. “Estonia can offer China high-quality dairy and fish products, as well as organic products where we see a rise in our production volumes. Our food safety and supervision in Estonia are also at a high standard,” Minister Tamm noted after the meeting. During the meeting with Minister Han Changfu, both sides also discussed possible cooperation in research and digital solutions for agriculture. Minister Tarmo Tamm also invited Minister Han to Estonia to attend the international conference Agroforum Mare Balticum, which in 2019 will focus on agroecology.

On 6 November, Minister Tamm signed a poultry protocol with the Vice Minister of the General Administration of Customs of China (GACC), Mr Wang Lingjun, which gives Estonian entrepreneurs the opportunity to export their poultry products to China.

“Estonian food safety and supervision are at a high level. Chinese inspectors have also seen this and as a result, we have already signed food safety protocols for dairy and certain fish products. Now we have taken one step further and also signed a poultry protocol with the Vice Minister of the General Administration of Customs,” Minister Tamm said. “What is especially noteworthy is the fact that we are only the second country in the European Union after Poland to have such enforced protocol with China,” the Minister added.

At the same evening, Minister Tarmo Tamm opened a reception dedicated to the introduction of Estonian food and food culture. The reception hosted Chinese officials and potential partners in the food industry to establish stronger political and business ties.

“Estonia’s advantage lies in our clean nature, which allows us to produce food that is both pure and high in quality,” Minister Tamm said in his opening address. He added that “Our businesses are greatly interested in exporting their products to the world and our current logistical and trade networks allow us to make it happen. Direct contacts are vital for developing export in the Chinese market and they can only be achieved through eye-to-eye meetings. That is why this event is of great importance to our businesses.” Renowned Estonian chefs Angelica Udeküll and Kristo Malm offered an array of Estonian flavours, including fish, beef, black garlic, curd snacks and nettle jam.

The official visit continued in Beijing, where Minister of Rural Affairs Tarmo Tamm opened the business seminar for Estonian entrepreneurs interested in the Chinese market, visited the Sino-Dutch Dairy Development Centre and met with representatives of the China Agricultural University to discuss scientific and technological cooperation in agriculture.

Estonian food and drinks producers that were represented at the China International Import Expo in Shanghai: AS Balsnack International, Heimtal Spirits OÜ, Saku Õlletehas AS, Värska Vesi AS, AS EBM Grupp, Vaba Aed OÜ, Amoor OÜ, Loodusvägi OÜ, Haage Joogid OÜ, Tanker Brewery OÜ, Farmi Piimatööstuse AS / Tere AS, HKScan Estonia AS, Reyktal AS, Orkla Eesti AS, AS PRFoods.

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