May 9-10, Thimphu: The Chief Veterinary Officers (CVOs) from the SAARC member countries have gathered to deliberate on control of infectious animal diseases across nations in the SAARC region as there exists free movement and informal trade. The member countries share long borders with many other countries.
The meeting will also serve to evaluate each other’s strengths and weakness and flag areas of mutual cooperation to ensure better livestock health in the region.
According to a spokesperson, one of the main aims of the meeting is to find ways for early, issuing of alerts and information sharing for trans-boundary animal diseases (TADs) so that the member countries can take adequate preventative steps. It will further explore the possibility of launching a progressive control program for TADs in south Asian region.
The meeting appointed Dr. Tashi Samdup, the Director General of the Department of Livestock, MoAF, Bhutan, as the new Chairman for CVOs in the SAARC region. He will serve till the convention of the next CVOs meeting.
Considering the endemic nature and rapidly increasing cases of TADs, the CVOs from SAARC region have been meeting regularly since 2008. Bhutan is hosting the 6th such meeting.
The past CVO’s meetings has formed TADs working group for its eradication and established vaccine bank, SAARC Livestock Vision Group and animal gene bank at the regional level. It also reviewed the veterinary education system and identified leading diagnostic laboratories in the region. The past meetings have further enhanced the timely information sharing of the major livestock events and disease outbreaks.
It is being jointly organised by the Department of Livestock, OIE and FAO.
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