China's customs ban imports of food from Japan's Fukushima and nine other regions
Published: Jul 07, 2023 10:46 AM
Photo: CFP

Photo: CFP

China's customs announced Friday to ban imports of food from Japan's Fukushima and nine other regions, as Japan makes final preparations for dumping nuclear-contaminated wastewater into the sea.

The issue of dumping nuclear-contaminated water into the ocean from Fukushima has become a global concern and has also raised concerns among Chinese consumers about the safety of imported Japanese food, the General Administration of Customs (GACC) said Friday.

To prevent the import of Japanese food contaminated with radioactive substances and protect the safety of Chinese consumers, Chinese customs decided to ban the import of food from ten prefectures in Japan, including Fukushima, the GACC said in the statement.

For food products from other regions in Japan, especially aquatic products, including edible aquatic animals, strict examination of the accompanying documents will be conducted, and an absolute inspection will be implemented, the Chinese customs authorities said.

Continuous efforts will be made to strengthen the detection and monitoring of radioactive substances to ensure the safety of Japanese food imports and prevent any risky products from entering China.

The customs authorities slammed the report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on the plan to dump contaminated water from the Fukushima nuclear plant into the ocean "failed to fully reflect the opinions of all experts involved in the evaluation and the conclusions have not been unanimously recognized by all parties."

"There are still many issues related to the legitimacy of Japan's dumping plan, the reliability of the purification equipment, and the completeness of the monitoring plan," the GACC highlighted. 

Chinese customs said it will remain highly vigilant and take all necessary measures in a timely manner to ensure the food safety of Chinese consumers on their table.

Since the Fukushima nuclear accident in 2011, Chinese customs said it has attached great importance to the issue of radioactive contamination of Japanese food imported to China as a result of the accident.

China customs has closely monitored the measures taken by the Japanese government regarding the Fukushima nuclear accident and continues to assess and respond to the risk of radioactive contamination in Japanese food, the GACC said. 

More than 80 percent of respondents in 11 countries in the Asia-Pacific region, except for Japan, said Japan's plan of dumping nuclear-contaminated water into the sea is "irresponsible" and nearly 90 percent of respondents expressed negative sentiments toward the plan, and 94 percent of them said the move will have a negative effect not only on Japan and Pacific Rim countries but also the whole world, a survey conducted by the Global Times Research Center found.

Global Times