Director General of the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), Dr. Bernard Vallat (at podium), addressing the delegates. (A. Miller/BGIS)

New tools, models of cooperation and synergies among key stakeholders in the animal health and veterinary sector and governments must be developed if countries are to effectively mitigate the challenges of the changing environment in the global trade of animals and animal products.

This is the view of Director General of the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), Dr. Bernard Vallat, who suggested that the most effective way to control global animal diseases was through the forging of strong alliances between all relevant parties.

He was speaking during the opening ceremony of the 21st Conference of the OIE Regional Commission for the Americas yesterday at the Accra Beach Hotel.

According to Mr. Vallat: "The global control of animal diseases is impossible without the good governance of national mechanisms. Good governance includes appropriate legislation, appropriate veterinary education, appropriate human and financial resources allocated to veterinary and livestock services and finally, relevant public/private partnerships applicable to the overall veterinary domain."

The OIE also expressed concern about the level of veterinary education within the Caribbean and Latin America region, noting that discussions will be held during the meeting with regard to the strengthening of this area.

The four-day meeting, which will run until Thursday, November 29, brings together over 100 delegates from OIE member countries across the globe.

Several international agencies are in attendance at the conference including the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), various non-governmental bodies as well as other organisations involved in animal health and production.


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