80 specialists and focal points on aquatic animal diseases from 36 African countries, along with representatives from the FAO (Rome), OIE (Paris), EC (Brussels), SARNISSA (Stirling), NVI (Oslo) and AAHRI (Bangkok) met in the coastal town of Swakopmund in NamIbia from June 15 – 19th, 2010 for a regional training seminar to improve their knowledge of the OIE and it’s activities, in general terms and more specifically as regards aquatic animal diseases, i.e. diseases of amphibians, crustaceans, fish and molluscs.
The seminar was facilitated by the European Commission (DG SANCO) and the Government of Namibia and was complemented by field visits to producers and processors of aquatic products, such as (farmed) fish, shell fish and oysters in Swakopmund and neighbouring Walvisbay.
Group picture. Picture (c) P. Bastiaensen (oie) 2010.
The meeting covered the overall mandates (amongst others : notification through WAHIS and general trade issues) as well as the specific mandates pertaining to aquatic animal diseases, i.e. the Aquatic Animal Health Standards Commission (represented by Dr. Ricardo Enriquez) and the Aquatic Code and Manual it produces annually. External speakers provided inputs on the inland and marine aquatic production sectors in the world and in Africa, the challenges of illegal, unregistered and unregulated fisheries, international and regional stakeholders working on aquatic health issues, and import, export and certification of aquatic products. Seven countries (including the host country) were given an opportunity to present the challenges they face in meeting OIE international standards, while case studies were presented by international experts on koi herpes virus, abalone virus mortality, white spot disease in shrimps, epizootic ulcerative syndrome in (fin)fish and fransicella infections in tilapia.
The meeting was attended by OIE focal points (or designated officials) from Angola, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Chad, Comoros, Congo (DRC), Cote d’Ivoire, Egypt, Eritrea, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mauritania, Morocco, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, São Tome & Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The meeting was also attended by all 4 (sub)Regional Representatives of the OIE in Africa, based in Bamako, Gaborone, Tunis and Nairobi.
All pictures (c) P. Bastiaensen (oie) 2010.