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Equine disease free zones (EDFZ)

Facilitation of International Competition Horse Movement -  HHP horses -  Regional conferences


Complementary to the HHP concept, a temporary establishment of a zone which is free of multiple specified equine diseases (“Equine Disease Free Zone”- EDFZ) can be considered by countries that wish to host an international equine sport event but where the control and eradication of all equine diseases in their entire territory is not feasible or achievable.
The establishment of an EDFZ is an extension of the concept of zoning as defined in the Code (Chapter 4.3 Zoning and Compartmentalisation). Horses within an EDFZ are protected from diseases that may occur in other parts of a country. Separation of the subpopulation inside the EFDZ from the general population (i.e. equines and other species outside the EDFZ) is achieved by the implementation of sound biosecurity management, certification standards and procedures, contingency planning and the identification of all horses resident in the EFDZ and the capacity to trace their movement.
The combination of the HHP and the EDFZ concepts can allow countries not recognised as an approved country for the free movement of horses to host an international sport event.




EDFZ was successfully applied during the 16th Asian Games in Guangzhou (China) in 2010. Based on this successful experience, the Hong Kong veterinary services, Mainland China veterinary authorities and the Hong Kong Jockey Club have engaged in a Public Private Partnership to transform this venue into a permanent EDFZ in view of facilitating safe regular cross-border transportation of race horses between the Hong Kong Special Administrative region and the EDFZ in Guangzhou.

The combination of the HHP and the EDFZ concepts was successfully implemented during the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon (Korea) to facilitate the international participation of horses originating from other Asian countries [See Self-declaration from the Republic of Korea of zonal freedom for equine diseases, OIE bulletin, 2014 (3) 84-86].

Following the recommendations of an OIE Mission in 2015 to advise on preparations for the Olympic Game, Brazil has established in 2016 an EDFZ in Deodoro for the purpose of hosting the Rio 2016 XXXI equestrian Olympic and Paralympic from 7 – 18 September 2016 [].

Kazakhstan has also engaged in the process of establishing an EDFZ. The OIE carried out an advisory mission to Kazakhstan in 2016.

Turkmenistan established an EDFZ for the purpose of hosting the 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games in Ashgabat in September 2017 []