Chinese rejection of Canadian canola imports widens

China’s rejection of canola imports from Canada’s Richardson International has spread to shipments from all Canadian firms, according to the Canola Council of Canada (CCC).

The council said on 21 March that canola exporters were reporting that Chinese importers were “unwilling to purchase Canadian canola seed at this time.”

“We’re disappointed that differing viewpoints cannot be resolved quickly,” World Grain quoted CCC president Jim Everson as saying. “Under the circumstances, Canadian canola seed exporters who normally ship to China have no alternative but to supply customers in other countries.”

China cancelled Richardson’s registration to export canola seeds to the country on 1 March, with officials citing concerns over insect infestation as the reason.
However, there is speculation that the move is linked to Canada’s arrest of Meng Wanzhou, vice president of Chinese technology firm Huawei. Meng, who is the daughter of Huawei’s founder, was arrested on 1 December at the request of US tax authorities.
World Grain said China was a major market for Canadian canola, taking 40% of all canola seed, oil and meal exports. The CCC said seed exports to China were worth US$2.7bn in 2018.
Everson urged the Canadian government “to continue to intensify efforts to resolve the situation”.

“Canadian ministers and government officials have responded quickly to Chinese concerns, however, technical discussions are unlikely to lead to an immediate resolution.”