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Statement by Mike Leavitt Secretary of Health and Human Services on the United States-China Bilateral Meetings on Food and Drug Safety

WASHINGTON, Sept. 14 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following is a statement by Mike Leavitt, Secretary of Health and Human Services:

Tomorrow my Chief of Staff, Rich McKeown, returns to Beijing as the head of a U.S. delegation comprised of policy and technical experts from my Department, to begin formal negotiations on two binding Agreements between the United States and China, one on the safety of food and feed, and one on the safety of drugs and medical devices. This trip follows a previous visit by this delegation in August and signifies another important step in addressing problems with food and other imports from China.

This next series of meetings marks the start of initial negotiations on these draft Agreements with the General Administration of Quality, Supervision, Inspection, and Quarantine and with the Chinese State Food and Drug Administration. The draft Agreements aim to create a framework to help assure the safety, quality and effectiveness of products exported from China to the United States. They also aim to increase cooperation and information-sharing between the regulatory bodies of the two nations, with the goal of strengthening China's regulatory process.

I am hopeful that our progress continues and that we can achieve two, strong, action-oriented documents by December.

Note: All HHS press releases, fact sheets and other press materials are available at

SOURCE U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
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