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Dr. Coburn Welcomes Resumption of U.S. Beef Imports to Japan

Location: Oklahoma City, OK

Dr. Coburn Welcomes Resumption of U.S. Beef Imports to Japan

July 27, 2006

(OKLAHOMA CITY) - U.S. Senator Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) released the following statement regarding the Japanese government's announcement that it will immediately re-open its market to U.S. beef imports.

"I applaud the reopening of the Japanese market to U.S. beef products from cattle 20 months and younger," Dr. Coburn said. "We've known all along Oklahoma and American cattlemen produce one of the safest, highest-quality products in the world. Today's announcement from the Japanese government is an excellent first step toward giving our beef producers the credit they deserve."

The Japanese government announced Wednesday, effective immediately, the country would resume American beef imports. Japan had re-opened its markets to U.S. beef in December 2005, but suspended imports in January. The U.S. Department of Agriculture introduced measures to satisfy Japanese concerns and after lengthy inspections American beef imports will resume.

"I look forward to further reducing trade restrictions with Japan on U.S. beef in addition to working with the U.S. trade representative to further expand true market access for all American agricultural commodities. I would also strongly encourage other countries with bans on American beef products to follow the lead of the Japanese government. The U.S. Congress is prepared to impose sanctions on countries who continue to block American beef imports and I will aggressively support such efforts. By working to expand market access around the world, we will allow American producers to fully demonstrate their ability to produce the safest and highest quality food supply."

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