EU will up Egyptian imports if E. coli dispute ends: official
Posted: August 11th, 2011 - 9:22pm
The EU's south Mediterranean representative, Bernardino León, weighs in on seeds, Syria and global debts during a visit to Cairo
The European Union will resume imports and increase orders for Egyptian produce if it finds a solution to the current dispute over alleged E. coli infection, an EU official has said.
Speaking at a Tuesday press conference held at the headquarters of the Delegation of the European Union to Egypt, Bernardino León, the EU's special representative for the southern Mediterranean region, said:
"I am Spanish and my country was also accused of being the source of the E. coli epidemic so I identify with the anger of Egyptians against the charges."
León explained that the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) was responsible for the decision to freeze the import of Egyptian seeds to EU's countries and it was now difficult to cancel the ban.
"We will discuss the problem again when the EU's delegation arrives to Egypt in the upcoming days," he promised.
According to León, if the crisis is resolved then the EU would not only reopen its market to Egyptian produce but also increase its orders to offset the damages felt by Egypt's farmers and exporters.