India hosted the 33rd Conference of the World Organization for Animal Health (WOAH) Regional Commission for Asia and the Pacific from November 13 to 16, 2023. This 4 day event was organized by the Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying, MoFAHD in New Delhi.
33rd WOAH Regional Commission Conference Opening and Closing:
- The inaugural session on November 13, 2023 was chaired by Sanjeev Kumar Balyan, Minister of State for Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying in the presence of several dignitaries.
- Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying Parshottam Rupala addressed the closing ceremony of the program on November 16, 2023.
- Animal welfare is deeply embedded in India's cultural heritage, converging harmoniously with the contemporary global One Health movement. This movement acknowledges the interconnected well-being of humans, animals, and the environment, emphasizing collaborative endeavors for the welfare of all living beings.
The decision to organize the WOAH conference in India was taken in Paris:
- The decision to award India the hosting rights of the event was taken during the 90th General Session of the World Assembly of Delegates of WOAH in Paris in May 2023.
Highlights of the 33rd Conference of WOAH Regional Commission:
- Representatives from 24 Member States, Chief Veterinary Officers and experts, senior officials from regional and international organizations and representatives from the regional private sector and private veterinary organizations participated physically, while others joined non-verbally.
- Delegates and representatives from global and regional organizations deliberated on important animal health issues such as bird flu/avian influenza, rabies, FMD, ASF, LSD. Recognized the need for a collaborative regional approach due to the borderless nature of these diseases.
- The deliberations underlined the need for stronger policy and legal frameworks, emphasizing the importance of sharing information and establishing multi-sectorial coordination mechanisms involving environmental health, including veterinary services, public health and wildlife conservation.
- Recognizing that effective coordination requires equitable financial and resource allocation.
- The meeting focused on preventive measures such as vaccination, disease intelligence, efficient laboratories and a skilled veterinary workforce.
Indonesia keen to host 34th WOAH Regional Conference:
- Indonesia has expressed its willingness to host the 34th WOAH Regional Conference for Asia and the Pacific.
- Dr. Baoxu Huang, Chairman of the Asia Pacific Regional Commission, WOAH, delivered the vote of thanks during the concluding session.
World Organization for Animal Health (WOAH):
- WOAH is an intergovernmental organization based in Paris, France, founded in 1924 to fulfill six main missions; These are:
- Ensuring transparency on global animal diseases
- Collecting, analyzing and disseminating veterinary scientific information
- Promoting global unity for the management of animal diseases.
- Protecting world trade by publishing health standards for international trade in animals and animal products (within its mandate under the SPS Agreement)
- Enhancing the legal infrastructure and resource capabilities of national veterinary services.
- To provide better guarantees of food of animal origin and promote animal welfare through a science-based approach.
- These missions are achieved through a variety of activities, including the establishment of standards, guidelines and recommendations related to animal health.