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23rd Conference of the OIE Regional Commission for the Americas

14-18 November 2016
Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia

 
© DGAV-Bolivia

Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 23 November 2016 - The 23rd Conference of the World Organisation for Animal Health’s (OIE) Regional Commission for the Americas, whose composition totals 30 members, was held in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia, from 14 to 18 November 2016.

The Opening ceremony was honoured by the presence of H.E. César Cocarico Yana, Minister of Rural Development and Lands, accompanied by several local authorities, including representatives from national producers and farmers. All stressed how important it was for governments to work for ensuring their countries’ compliance with OIE standards in order to secure safe and sustainable trade, and hence global supply, which is one of the biggest concerns of our day.


Dr Monique Éloit, OIE Director General, addressed a welcome message to the audience and thanked the Plurinational State of Bolivia for its hospitality. The OIE Director General also congratulated Bolivia for having undertaken the Veterinary Legislation reform as well as for its commitment with the OIE, highlighting the engagement of the country in the OIE PVS Pathway.


In the margin of the Conference, an agreement of cooperation with the OIE with provision to sending a seconded officer to the OIE Headquarters for supporting the work of the Status Department during three years was signed. Dr Eloit expressed the deepest recognition of the OIE to Bolivia for its engagement with the organisation activities.

  
The OIE Director General underlined the fact that the region of the Americas was one of the world's leading regions in terms of animal production, making it one of the main providers of animal proteins to the world, thus, she emphasised that it was of paramount importance to ensure the capacity and sustainability of its Veterinary Services.


The event gathered national Delegates and/or their representatives of 20 Member Countries of the OIE Regional Commission for the Americas, the President of the OIE and several high level representatives of the OIE Headquarters and the OIE Regional Representation for the Americas. Representatives of international and regional organisations involved in animal and veterinary public health activities in the region and numerous observers and experts also participated in the event.


The Conference was the occasion to discuss on issues relevant to the region. As a result, plenary presentations on the necessary relationship among the various institutional actors, group sessions and panel discussions triggered an important dynamic for this important institutional event.


Participants were also provided with detailed information, analyses, and trends on the diseases of greatest concern in the Americas, gathered through the OIE World Animal Health Information System (WAHIS), namely glanders, classical swine fever, foot-and-mouth disease, rabies, highly-pathogenic avian influenza, and small hive beetle infestation.


The following technical items were subsequently discussed: “Implementation and maintenance of animal traceability in the Americas: overview of current status and impact for international trade” and “Highly pathogenic Avian Influenza: challenges encountered and measures for preventing its spread”.

 

Several key issues involving the Member Countries of the region, with special emphasis on the following matters were also deliberated:

  • The Contribution of the Americas to the Global foot and mouth disease control strategy, towards a free continent;
  • Antimicrobial Resistance: Contribution of the Americas;
  • The Depopulation and/or movement of animal populations during animal health emergencies and natural disasters. Experience in the region;
  • Outcomes of the National Bridging Workshop on International Health Regulations (IHR) and OIE Performance of Veterinary Services (PVS) Pathway;
  • The OIE PVS Pathway: beyond the myths.


Furthermore, a panel discussion involving several international and regional organisations was organised to address the challenges of international trade of animals and products of animal origin and how to engage all interested parties.


The discussions were fruitful and the recommendations adopted during the Conference will be submitted to the OIE World Assembly in May 2017, for endorsement.


The Conference was kindly hosted by the Bolivian Government.

 

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