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Cablegate: Finland Supports Approval of Biotech Corn

R 041348Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY HELSINKI
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 5160
INFO AMEMBASSY THE HAGUE
USDA FAS WASHDC

UNCLAS HELSINKI 000332


TO USTR, THE HAGUE FOR SHUETE, DEPT FOR EEB/TPP/ABT AND
EUR/ERA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ECON ETRD EUN TBIO EAGR FI
SUBJECT: FINLAND SUPPORTS APPROVAL OF BIOTECH CORN

REF: STATE 86566

1. Econoff delivered reftel points to Matti Aho Director
General for the Department of Food and Health at the Ministry
of Forestry and Agriculture. Aho noted that Finland had
received no imports of US soy products containing dust from
biotech corn MON88017, and therefore had no reports of
voluntary suspensions of US soy imports.

2. Aho added that this issue might be discussed at the
September 7 European Union (EU) Agricultural Council meeting,
but any vote to approve or deny the use of MON88017 in the EU
would take place at a later date. When the Council
eventually votes on MON88017, Aho predicted that there would
be no clear majority and that the issue would return to the
European Commission for review.

3. Aho acknowledged the importance of this issue to US
agricultural interests. Finland supports approval of
MON88017 and has asked the EC to draft new legislation to
allow small quantities (maximum .1%) of non-approved biotech
products to be imported as long as the products have been
positively assessed by the European Food and Safety
Authority.


ORECK

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