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Japanese seafood imports from 10 prefectures restricted

Japanese seafood imports

The Hong Kong Secretary for Environment and Ecology, Mr. Tse Chin-wan, announced at a media session yesterday, 23 August, that Hong Kong will prohibit the import of aquatic products originating from Japan’s 10 metropolises or prefectures starting today, 24 August.

Mr. Tse Chin-wan, said, “We have a plan to prohibit the food from (a number of) Japanese prefectures which we believe has some risk,” he said. “Then, we (will) also have to check all the food imported from Japan to ensure that their radioactive levels meet all the (food safety) standards,

“Therefore, I believe, with all those measures in place, we can assure the people of Hong Kong (that) all food sold in the Hong Kong market is safe, including those (that) are allowed (to be imported) from Japan.”

The 10 prefectures originating from Tokyo, Fukushima, Chiba, Tochigi, Ibaraki, Gunma, Miyagi, Niigata, Nagano, and Saitama will be prohibited from importing all aquatic products in Hong Kong.

The prohibited products include all live, frozen, chilled, dried, or otherwise preserved aquatic products, as well as sea salt and unprocessed or processed seaweed.

Meanwhile, the Centre for Food Safety under the Food & Environmental Hygiene Department will enhance its testing of imported Japanese food.

Asked by reporters as to how long the prohibition will last, Mr Tse said the Hong Kong SAR Government does not have a timetable at the moment.

He pointed out that it depends on the information provided by the Japanese government after the discharge, including data on levels of radioactivity and information about how it is monitored and managed, and the Government will monitor radioactivity in local waters and fishery products. Data will be published each working day, Mr Tse said.