Q: Over the past days, it was reported by BBC and some South African media that due to the increasing demand for donkey skins in the Chinese market, donkeys in some regions of South Africa were stolen and slaughtered illegally, and some Chinese nationals were involved in several cases. What is your comment on that?
A: We have noted relevant reports. Up to now, China and South Africa do not have any agreement on entry-exit inspection and quarantine of South Africa donkey skins and meat. And according to our knowledge, there is no Chinese company importing donkey skins from South Africa through legal channel.
We regret about the cases of donkeys being abused and slaughtered illegally in some parts of South Africa. We support South African authorities in combating theft and illegal slaughter of donkeys and punishing criminals according to its laws and regulations.
Meanwhile, we hope that the relevant media could be more professional and responsible so as to avoid misleading the readers by playing up wrong arguments and damaging China's image and China-South Africa normal economic and trade relations.