09MOSCOW2543, PUTIN CALLS FOR INTERNATIONAL STANDARDS TO

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW2543 2009-10-08 06:47 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXYZ0002
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMO #2543/01 2810647
ZNR UUUUU ZZH (CCY ADC00433 MSI0671-695)
P 080647Z OCT 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHRC/USDA FAS WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5030
INFO RUEHVI/AMEMBASSY VIENNA 4774
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 5386

UNCLAS MOSCOW 002543 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
C O R R E C T E D COPY CAPTION 
USDA FAS FOR OCRA/RIKER; ONA/TING, 
- OSTA/BEAN, HAXTON 
PASS FSIS/JONES, DUTROW 
STATE FOR EUR/RUS 
STATE PASS USTR FOR MURPHY, CHATTIN, HAFNER 
VIENNA FOR APHIS 
BRUSSELS PASS APHIS/FERNANDEZ 
GENEVA FOR USTR 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: EAGR ETRD ECON RS
SUBJECT: PUTIN CALLS FOR INTERNATIONAL STANDARDS TO 
REPLACE RESTRICTIVE SPS TRADE MEASURES 
 
REF: A) Moscow 001556  B) Moscow 001206  C) Moscow 001187  D) 
Moscow 1150 
 
 
1.  (U) SUMMARY:  Prime Minister Vladimir Putin issued Resolution 
#761, 
which calls for Russian restrictive, non-science-based 
sanitary/phytosanitary 
(SPS) measures to be harmonized with international norms.  However, 
the 
details of Resolution #716's implementation remain unclear as 
officials in 
the Ministry of Health and Social Development (MinHealth) and 
Ministry of 
Agriculture (MinAg) await more specific orders and certain GOR 
Commissions are already in the midst of resetting such overarching 
SPS 
policy.  END SUMMARY. 
 
2. (U) Resolution #761 calls for harmonizing Russian sanitary and 
epidemiological requirements, veterinary, sanitary and phytosanitary 
 
measures with international standards where Russian standards are 
more 
restrictive and are not science-based.  According to the Resolution, 
 
MinHealth and MinAg should establish procedures to compare Russian 
and 
international standards before 2010.  The evaluation will take into 
 
consideration the requests of interested entities, including foreign 
 
governments.  At this time, it is not clear if requests responding 
to 
Resolution #761 are currently being accepted or what deadline would 
be set 
for the implementation of international standards.  Instead, 
Resolution #761 
appears only to oblige the respective Ministries to set a roadmap 
for 
comparison of standards by January 1, 2010, while the actual 
comparison of 
standards and eventual adoption of international norms would likely 
take 
place sometime thereafter. 
 
3.  (U) Resolution #761 is online at 
.  An unofficial embassy 
 
translation of Resolution #761 follows. 
 
BEGIN TEXT: 
 
Resolution of September 28, 2009, #761 "On ensuring harmonization of 
 
Russian sanitary-epidemological requirements, veterinary-sanitary 
and 
phytosanitary measures with international standards". 
 
With the purpose of improvement of the system of legal regulation in 
the 
area of protection of life and health of humans, animals and plants, 
further 
harmonization with international standards of sanitary and 
epidemiological 
requirements, veterinary, sanitary and phytosanitary measures in 
force in 
Russia with international standards, the Government of the Russian 
Federation stipulates: 
 
Determine that legal acts, establishing sanitary-epidemiological 
requirements, veterinary-sanitary and phytosanitary measures are 
subject to 
expertise for their compliance with the standards, recommendations 
and 
other documents of international organizations, including the World 
Health 
Organization, Codex Alimentarius Commission, World Organization for 
 
Animal Health (OIE), and corresponding international and regional 
 
organizations, which are acting within the framework of the 
International 
Plant Protection Convention (hereafter referred to as expert 
evaluation and 
international standards) 
 
Legal acts establishing sanitary and epidemiological requirements, 
veterinary, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, which, as a result 
of the 
expert evaluation have restrictive character compared to 
international 
standards, without scientific basis of such restriction or risk 
level for life or 
health of humans, animals and plants, are subject to be brought in 
compliance with international standards. 
 
The Ministry of Health and Social Development of the Russian 
Federation 
and the Ministry of Agriculture of the Russian Federation shall: 
 
--within 3 months from the effective date of this Resolution develop 
and 
approve the order of carrying out an expert evaluation within their 
 
competence; 
 
--ensure the carrying out of the expert evaluation is on the basis 
of written 
requests from interested entities, including the governments of 
foreign 
countries, with their possible participation in its implementation 
or upon 
their initiative. Within 30 days from the receipt of a written 
request, the 
corresponding federal executive entity shall acknowledge the receipt 
of the 
request to the requesting party. 
 
The present Resolution becomes effective of the date of its official 
 
publication. 
 
Chairman of the Government of the Russian Federation 
V.Putin 
 
END TEXT. 
 
4. (U) Mid-management authorities in the MinAg and MinHealth did not 
 
appear fully aware of what changes Resolution #716 would bring when 
 
Agricultural Specialists contacted them Friday, October 2.  The 
MinAg 
officials were unaware of th
e Resolution's existence but insisted 
that 
Minister Skrynnik will likely appoint the Russian Federal Veterinary 
and 
Phytosanitary Surveillance Service (VPSS) as the MinAg point of 
contact. 
The MinHealth officials were aware of the Resolution but insisted 
that no 
changes were likely to result from it unless additional budget 
allocations 
were made to MinHealth for such a special review.  Instead, 
MinHealth 
officials insisted they already accept applications from the 
scientific 
community and interested industries to establish such norms 
addressed in 
Resolution #761 via the Commission for the Development of Federal 
Sanitary-epidemiological Norms, located within MinHealth. 
 
5.  (U) Meanwhile, the Interagency Expert Commission, led by the 
MinAg 
and including the MinHealth, is currently considering a draft 
Federal Law 
regarding the Special Technical Regulation "On the Requirements for 
 
Poultry, Poultry Meat, Processed Poultry Products, their Production 
Process, 
 
and Handling."  The USG, U.S. industry, and Russian industry have 
argued 
against measures contained within this draft document since the 
current 
version would actually increase restrictions on trade and local 
production 
practices rather than standardize them with international norms and 
current 
production practices in both Russia and the United States.  We know 
that the 
Russian National Meat Association has formally objected to the draft 
 
Federal Law, pointing out that these are contrary to scientific, 
international 
norms and are in many cases not realistic for Russian producers. 
The draft 
Federal Law is online at . 
 
6.  (SBU) On September 29, MinAg specifically called upon the 
Russian 
poultry and meat associations and select companies to provide 
comments on 
specific points of tension within the draft Federal Law, including 
those 
points related to proposed bans on chlorine-treated poultry, 
restrictions on 
water content, and restrictions on using frozen poultry for 
processing.  One 
recipient of this letter was U.S. joint-venture Eleanor Broiler. 
 
6.  (SBU) Comment:  We like the message Putin sent with Resolution 
#761; 
however, we are concerned if these comments will truly transcend 
into real 
policy change.  Such movement to adopt international standards on 
SPS 
issues would move Russia closer to WTO accession as well as deliver 
a 
much more favorable, predictable, and science-based trading 
environment 
for U.S. meat and poultry products.  The immediate benefits to 
current trade 
could include the successful conclusion of several U.S.-friendly 
veterinary 
certificates, including pork; the elimination of current and future 
trade 
restrictions related to A/H1N1; a significant reduction in the 
number of 
banned U.S. meat and poultry facilities; and the dismissal of the 
chlorine ban 
which is set to become effective January 1, 2010.  However, we are 
concerned Russia will likely hide behind caveats and creative 
interpretation 
to maintain many of these restrictive SPS trade policy measures.  As 
a result, 
we expect Resolution #761 will only provide a political cover to 
finally 
dismiss both trade linkages to A/H1N1 and the threatened chlorine 
ban, 
which would otherwise stop all U.S. poultry trade on January 1, 
2010. 
 
BEYRLE

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