South Korea is asked to lift ban on seafood

Kyodo

A fisheries federation on Tuesday asked South Korea to lift an import ban imposed because of radiation-contaminated water reaching the sea at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.

Hiroshi Kishi, head of the National Federation of Fisheries Cooperative Associations, visited the South Korean Embassy in Tokyo to file the request, group officials said.

JF Zengyoren officials quoted South Korean Embassy officials as telling Kishi that the import ban could be lifted if the safety of marine products is confirmed scientifically and objectively.

Kishi told reporters later that he explained the current situation in Japan’s fishing industry and his group will continue to seek the lifting of the import ban.

In the letter filed with the embassy, JF Zengyoren asked South Korea to lift the import ban, which the group said was not based on clear scientific grounds.

South Korea has imposed the import ban on all fisheries products from Fukushima Prefecture and seven surrounding prefectures — Aomori, Iwate, Miyagi, Ibaraki, Tochigi, Gunma and Chiba — since Sept. 9, citing the radioactive water reaching the sea at the nuclear plant.

In mid-September, the Fisheries Agency sent a senior official to South Korea to provide the latest information on how Japan is maintaining the safety of fisheries products and taking measures to deal with the radioactive water, while South Korean officials said they will review the data and information provided by Japan.