Chinese evidence behind canola impasse? ‘So far we’ve heard nothing,’ Carr says

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OTTAWA — International Trade Minister Jim Carr says Beijing has yet to provide an explanation for China’s decision to block canola shipments from one of Canada’s largest grain producers.

A Chinese government spokesman has argued Beijing’s move this month to suspend canola imports from Richardson International Ltd. came after hazardous organisms were detected in the company’s product.

Carr says Canada wants to solve the matter — but it needs China to provide scientific evidence to back up the claims.

He says so far there’s been little progress despite the federal government’s efforts to press officials in Beijing and at the Chinese embassy in Ottawa for more information.

China’s decision to reject shipments of one of Canada’s key export products comes with the two countries locked in a tense diplomatic dispute that erupted after the December arrest of Huawei senior executive Meng Wanzhou in Vancouver at the behest of the United States.

Carr says there’s no evidence of a link between the Meng case and the canola impasse, so Canada is treating it as a science issue.

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