China lifts 13-year import ban on Japanese carp

Beijing, Dec 27 (IANS) China has resumed imports of Japanese koi, removing a ban imposed amid viral disease outbreaks at the country’s fishing farms in 2003, authorities said on Tuesday.

The first shipment of 20 Japanese koi arrived in Shanghai on Friday and is undergoing quarantine inspection at the airport, Xinhua news agency cited the Shanghai Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau as saying in a statement.

After the inspection, the carp will be put under quarantine for another 30 days at a designated fish farm for further observation, it said.

China suspended imports of the Japanese aquarium carp in 2003, when a major outbreak of carp herpes, a virally transmitted disease, ruined many carp farms in Japan.

China’s aquarium carp market reported a turnover of approximately 10 billion yuan ($1.44 billion) in 2015.

Resumption of imports from Japan is expected to help local fish farmers improve breeding.