U.S. Can Again Export Horses to China

In 2015 China placed a hold on the importation of live U.S. horses due to concerns about equine infectious anemia.

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Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles praised the resumption of live equine exports to China at a signing ceremony in Beijing on Nov. 6. The agreement, signed by United States Ambassador to China Terry Branstad and Minister Zhi Shuping of the People’s Republic of China, clears the way for the importation of all breeds of U.S. horses, including high-quality Thoroughbred racing horses, to China, where a rapidly expanding racing industry has emerged.

“Today’s announcement is a game-changer for Kentucky’s horse industry,” said Quarles, who attended the signing ceremony in China. “This policy change is the result of work on the part of the Kentucky Department of Agriculture and will greatly benefit our economy and workers. Today’s announcement is a victory for everyone in the Bluegrass State and all of Kentucky agriculture, from those who raise horses to the farmers who supply their feed.”

In 2015, the Chinese Administration of Quality Supervision Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) placed a hold on the importation of live horses from the United States due to concerns about equine infectious anemia (EIA), an infectious and potentially fatal viral disease of members of the horse family.

The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), the Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders (KTOB), the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA), Keeneland Association, U.S. Livestock Genetics Export, and Quarles worked together to address concerns in the People’s Republic about EIA. This began with a visit to China in fall of 2016. Earlier this year, Quarles hosted a Chinese delegation in Kentucky for a site visit

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