Canada expects several Asian markets that banned Canadian beef after the country reported a case of mad cow disease in May 2003 to resume imports soon, Canadian Beef Export Federation President Ted Haney said.
China is expected to allow the import of beef and other cattle product to resume gradually in the first half of this year, probably after Japan, South Korea and Taiwan resume imports in the next few months, Haney said in an interview in Hong Kong.
Canada's efforts to have bans dropped in Asia and the US were set back this month when the country reported two more cases of the disease, called bovine spongiform encephalopathy, or BSE.
The disease has a fatal human variant.
"Countries suspended negotiations on resuming imports briefly and asked for more information about the new cases," said Haney, a member of a Canadian trade delegation to China.
Talks, while slightly delayed, had resumed, he said.
The recent cases didn't hurt sales in Hong Kong, which allowed imports of Canadian beef to resume on Nov. 30, Haney said.