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OIE receives a Canadian $2 million contribution from Canada for animal health activities

Paris , 26 February 2010 – Canada Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz announced on a visit to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) that Canada will contribute Canadian $2 million to support OIE activities.

“The positive impact of animal health policies on fair and safe trade but also on poverty reduction and public health is in itself ample justification for financing and maintaining animal health strategies and specific programmes worldwide, Dr Bernard Vallat , OIE Director General said. “ Canada has always been supportive of OIE’s actions but I would like to stress my personal thanks to the Government of Canada for confirming it again today through this additional contribution,” he added.

“Canada supports fair and safe international trade and we are in Paris to reaffirm our commitment to maximize global trade opportunities using science based standards adopted by all OIE Members”, said Minister Ritz. "Our Government is pleased to make this additional contribution to support the vital work of the OIE as part of our continued efforts to promote fair international trade for Canadian animals and animal products and for producers worldwide," Minister Ritz said.

Dr Vallat, Mr. Ritz and Dr. Brian Evans, Canada’s Delegate to the OIE, discussed the importance of science-based standards for the safe international movement of animals and their products and the role the OIE plays in the context of global trade, public heath and poverty alleviation.

Funds dedicated to capacity building and implementation of standards

Priorities of shared interest will be evaluated on an annual basis to direct the funds for maximum benefit and impact, including support to OIE Headquarters and OIE regional activities through regional seminars for the capacity building of key national policy makers.

The OIE World Animal Health and Welfare Fund was established in 2004 for the purpose of projects of international public good relating to the control of animal diseases, including zoonoses through capacity building investment. It allows for voluntary contributions to be directed to specific activities as defined with the donor.