Agreement with the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation
COOPERATION AGREEMENT BETWEEN
THE SOUTH ASIAN ASSOCIATION FOR REGIONAL COOPERATION (SAARC)
THE WORLD ORGANISATION FOR ANIMAL HEALTH (OIE)
Adopted on 30 November 2005
THE WORLD ORGANISATION FOR ANIMAL HEALTH (OIE), with headquarters at 12, rue de Prony, 75017 Paris, FRANCE, duly represented by its Director General, hereinafter referred to as “OIE”
THE SOUTH ASIAN ASSOCIATION FOR REGIONAL COOPERATION , with its Secretariat at 39, Trivedi Marg, Kathmandu, NEPAL, duly represented by its Secretary General, hereinafter referred to as ”SAARC"
Considering that Member Countries of SAARC have more than 50% of the world cattle and domestic buffalo population and produce over 20 % of the total milk and meat consumed in the world;
Considering that the livelihoods of more than half of the population of SAARC Member Countries depend directly or indirectly on livestock production and as such improved livestock production plays a significant role in poverty alleviation and public health;
Considering that the development of livestock production in the SAARC region is heavily reliant upon protection against major animal diseases and zoonoses which are prevalent in the region;
Considering that the Veterinary Services of SAARC Member Countries need to be strengthened in terms of infrastructure, expertise and other forms of capacity building;
Considering that the strengthening of the Veterinary Services is a key factor in the application of sanitary measures and for the protection of public health;
Considering that the development of trade in animals and animal products necessitates a well developed animal health information system, the creation of an appropriate legislative and regulatory environment through the establishment of standards acceptable to all the stakeholders involved;
Considering that one of the principal objectives of the OIE is to collect and disseminate information on the occurrence of animal diseases worldwide and on the means of controlling them;
Considering that one of the principal objectives of the OIE is to facilitate international trade in animals and animal products through the development of international animal health standards;
Considering OIE’s new mandate in the field of animal production food safety
Considering that objectives of SAARC include the promotion of welfare of the peoples and improvement of their quality of life, acceleration of economic growth, strengthening of collective self-reliance and promoting of active collaboration among its Member States, to this end it may enter into cooperation agreements with international and regional organisations with similar purposes;
Considering further that such objectives require, among other things, sustained progress in agricultural development, which essentially includes development of livestock production and prevention of animal diseases and zoonoses in its Member States;
Aware of the need to establish a Cooperation Agreement;
Hereby agree to the following:
The purpose of the present Agreement is to enable the Parties to pursue more effectively their common interests and objectives through technical cooperation.
OIE, in accordance with its rules and practices, shall assist SAARC in the following fields, the list not being exhaustive:
- Harmonisation of animal health legislation and regulations;
- Design and setting up of epidemiological surveillance, disease reporting and animal health information systems;
- Development of standards for trade in animals and animal products;
- Strengthening of the Veterinary Services through support for the organisation of training courses in academic institutions in the veterinary and animal production food safety fields.
The provisions of this article shall not prevent SAARC from engaging in cooperation activities with other institutions for the development and implementation of these or other matters.
Within the framework of its assistance, OIE shall help SAARC to benefit from available international expertise.
SAARC shall undertake as far as practically possible, to provide OIE with any support, admissible under SAARC rules and practices, from its personnel needed to perform assigned tasks .
The Parties shall provide, to the fullest extent possible, mutual information on development and progress of those activities deemed to be of common interest, and shall exchange information and documentation thereon on a regular basis, subject to restrictions for reasons of confidentiality .
Each Party may invite representatives of the other Party to attend meetings as observers, without a vote in accordance with the applicable rules, procedures and practices of both organisations, and when matters of common interest are to be considered.
OIE shall provide SAARC with its publications catalogue so as to enable SAARC to order publications of interest, at preferential prices. OIE and SAARC will exchange documents of mutual interest free of charge.
The Parties shall hold consultations, as and when necessary, on matters relevant to the implementation of the present Agreement and may, on a basis of mutual consent, propose new modalities to improve its efficacy.
The present Agreement shall enter into force on the date of its signature by the representatives of SAARC and OIE, and shall be of indefinite duration. It may be amended, by mutual agreement, and terminated by either Party by written notice submitted six months in advance.