MONTEVIDEO – Uruguay’s Foreign Minister Rodolfo Nin Novoa told EFE on Tuesday that his country, “after a long period of negotiations, is very close to obtaining an opening to the Japanese meat market.”
The foreign minister made that statement during an event in Montevideo to promote economic and trade relations between Japan and Uruguay, following the recent signing of the Liberalization, Promotion and Protection Accord between the two countries.
“We’ve been working on this for many years and we’re very close to getting an opening to the Japanese meat market,” Nin Novoa said, adding that the Japanese market is “extremely demanding but pays very good prices for meat like we have in Uruguay.”
The minister said that Uruguay had to solve “some health matters” to be able to offer its products to the Asian country, but that it is “very close to achieving the final protocol.”
For his part, the executive director of the foreign trade agency Uruguay XXI, Antonio Carambula, who also took part in presenting the advantages of doing business with the South American country to Asian business owners and executives, told EFE that he is “watching with great expectations what the opening of the meat market in Japan will signify.”
He also noted that he is sure the “health barriers” will be lifted and that the next step will be to “work on promoting and improving access,” since Uruguay will have to compete with Australia and New Zealand, which have the advantage of being nearer Japan.
He also announced that on July 21 the Uruguay XXI team, together with Deputy Economy Minister Pablo Ferrer, will travel to the Brazilian city of Sao Paulo to present the opportunities that Uruguay offers to the many Japanese entrepreneurs based in Brazil.
Meat represents Uruguay’s key product for export, for as Carambula said in his presentation, this country of 3.3 million inhabitants “produces enough to feed 30 million people.