Margaret Thatcher sworn in as Britain’s first female Prime Minister
25/04/2006 Japan

Japan is providing US$ 155 million to assist Asian countries in the fight against bird flu, a joint conference by the Japanese ministry of agriculture, fisheries and forestry, FAO and OIE annouced today.

Nearly US$19 million is entrusted to FAO and OIE for capacity building in national veterinary services, AI notification systems, enhancement of regional and national control strategies and contingency planning against Avian Influenza.

The joint conference kicked off the OIE/FAO Special Trust Fund Programme for Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) Control at Source in Southeast Asia.

The conference is attended by chief veterinary officers from eight Southeast Asian countries (Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand and Viet Nam), as well as representatives of related Japanese ministries and institutes, United Nations and donor agencies.

FAO and OIE will cooperate in promoting regional and national strategies to control HPAI at source – in poultry.

With the one year budget of $10.8 million provided by Japan, FAO will undertake a review of the effectiveness of HPAI control strategies at field level in order to improve strategic surveillance, data analysis as well as post vaccination monitoring in the countries.

In addition, FAO will look at improving preventive control measures – such as culling – within the overall framework of national AI control policies.

The Japanese funding is permitting FAO to develop mechanisms and tools to promote biosecurity particularly in backyard production systems and improve public awareness of AI in close cooperation with national governments and regional organizations in Southeast Asia.

Tokyo, 25 April 2006

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