Prohibited and Restricted Imports in Hong Kong

A Hot Tip about Imports/Exports in Hong Kong SAR

Posted on: 29 Mar 2010

The import of munitions, firearms and fireworks is strictly forbidden.


Hong Kong banned imports of U.S. beef in December 2003 following a reported case of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE). After two years of intensive efforts by the U.S. Government and industry, the Hong Kong government in December 2005 announced the partial reopening of its market (with numerous restrictions) to deboned beef derived from animals less than 30 months of age. These restrictions, however, have discouraged most qualified U.S. beef exporters from shipping to Hong Kong. It is estimated that the two year ban (2004-2005) cost U.S. exporters approximately $160 million. World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) guidelines provide for scientifically based conditions under which all beef and beef products from animals of any age can be safely traded. In May 2007, the OIE classified the United States as controlled risk for BSE. The United States continues to press Hong Kong to fully open its market for all U.S. beef and beef products on the basis of the OIE guidelines and the OIE’s classification of the United States as controlled risk for BSE. Restrictions have limited U.S. exports of beef and beef variety meats to Hong Kong. However, the value of US beef and beef products exports to Hong Kong reached record high of US$84 million in 2009, surpassing the $82 million export value in 2003.


Hong Kong has offered to open its market in three phases to all OIE-consistent beef products. Hong Kong authorities conducted an audit visit in October 2009 to beef processing facilities in the United States. Pending Hong Kong’s submission of its findings, the two sides have agreed to attempt to negotiate a protocol governing all aspects of Hong Kong imports of U.S. beef.



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Posted: 29 March 2010

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