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Russia and the United States have signed
Russia and the United States have signed a new 2009 meat deal, cutting U.S. poultry imports and increasing import duties on poultry and pork supplies above quotas, the Economic Development Ministry said on Tuesday.

Maxim Medvedkov, head of the ministry's department for trade negotiations, said that under the deal Russia had cut its 2009 quota for poultry imports from all countries from 1.25 million to 952,000 metric tons.

Under the deal, Russia can increase duty on poultry imports up to 95% of value for supplies above quotas and up to 75% for pork imports.

At the same time, Russia's import duties for quoted pork imports have been left unchanged, Medvedkov said.

"The regime for meat trade in 2010 and subsequent years will be discussed at consultations with Russia's basic meat importing countries next year," Medvedkov said.

The U.S. trade mission in Russia welcomed the deal, saying the new agreement would enable U.S. meat exporters to continue supplies to the Russian market.

In 2008, Russia's quotas for poultry meat imports totaled around 1.2 million metric tons, including 870,000 tons from the United States. Under the new quotas, U.S. poultry imports will be cut by 180,000 metric tons in 2009 while poultry supplies from the European Union will be reduced by 60,000 metric tons.

Russia's agricultural watchdog said on Tuesday it had resumed the issue of permissions for U.S. poultry imports after deciding to delay for a year the introduction of new sanitary rules of poultry treatment restricting the use of chlorine.

Russia banned poultry imports from 19 U.S. producers on September 1, citing their failure to meet sanitary standards. Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said the ban was not political.

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