News Releases

Murray Announces Reopening of Taiwan Market for U.S. Apples

Apr 27 2005

Resumption of trade will benefit industry, region

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Five months after Taiwan closed its market to U.S. apple imports, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) today announced Taiwan’s decision to reopen its borders effective immediately. The market was closed following the discovery of coddling moth larvae in an apple shipment to Taiwan in December 2004.

Today’s news comes just one week after Senator Murray sent a letter to Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Dr. David Lee calling for the immediate reopening of the Taiwan market to U.S. apples. Washington state apple growers ship over $47 million worth of apples to Taiwan each year, making the reopening of the market a significant trade and economic victory for Washington state.

“This is great news for our state and our apple industry,” Murray said today. “For five months, Washington apple growers have been devastated by the closure of Taiwan’s market to U.S. apple imports. Taiwan is a valued trading partner, and I’m pleased that the discussions between representatives of our two nations finally yielded an agreement that will again provide our producers with access to this important market.”

Under a 2003 agreement between the U.S. Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and Taiwan’s Bureau of Animal and Plant Health Inspection and Quarantine (BAPHIQ), the U.S. is required to suspend apple exports to Taiwan if coddling moth larvae are found on three separate occasions within one year. The December discovery marked the third case in 2004, following incidents in September and October.

“While I applaud Taiwan’s decision to reopen its borders,” Murray continued, “it is my hope that any future conflicts can be resolved in a more timely manner. With our state’s apple producers dependent on Taiwan and other critical overseas markets, it’s imperative that we keep open lines of communication and work cooperatively to address these issues.”

Senator Murray has long supported economic and trade support for Washington state’s apple growers. In early 2001, Murray worked to provide emergency economic relief to Washington state apple growers and has pushed the U.S. Department of Commerce to eliminate anti-dumping duties on Chinese apple juice concentrate that hurt Washington state growers.

Read the full text of Senator Murray’s letter to the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative is attached.