The Chinese Health Ministry has issued a second set of regulations governing genetically modified organisms, intended to clarify the situation for importers. However, traders say they offer little help as they fail to spell out specifics.

Soybean imports from the US and Latin America have been severely hampered after the Agriculture Ministry announced an initial set of regulations earlier this year. The new rules are reported by Reuters to be causing fresh confusion, but are not expected to further impede shipments, as crushers are desperate to replenish dwindling stocks.

"It's hard to grasp what's going on with the rules, but I don't see the government hacking off soybean supplies now because China is short of them," said a trader with a global trading firm in Shanghai. "There is no point creating problems now."

The Health Ministry is now seeking public opinion on its revised rules.