China's domestic poultry production is projected to drop by 20% in 2004, according to Chinese media reports citing research by the Ministry of Agriculture. A major contributing factor to the drop in production is the sharp reduction in demand that is a result of the avian influenza outbreak in late January. In the wake of the outbreak, 48 countries and regions enacted restrictions on Chinese poultry imports, with only 21 saying they might partially or fully rescind the bans. China was the world's fifth-largest exporter of chicken in 2003, exporting 420,000 tons.
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