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Dr Gillian Mylrea OIE International Trade Department. Devising Import Health Measures for Safe Trade. Sofia, 25-26 June 2008. Topics for discussion. OIE Codes and Manuals Setting health measures Members obligations 2.1. Notification obligations 2.2. General obligations

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Dr Gillian Mylrea

OIE International Trade Department

Devising Import Health Measures for Safe Trade

Sofia, 25-26 June 2008

topics for discussion
Topics for discussion
  • OIE Codes and Manuals
  • Setting health measures
  • Members obligations

2.1. Notification obligations

2.2. General obligations

4.Devising import measures

3.1. Utilising information in WAHID

3.2. Hazard identification

3.3. Using the Code

5.Drawing up health certificates


OIE International Standards

Trade standards


Biological standards


Terrestrial Animal Health Code – mammals, birds, bees

Aquatic Animal Health Code – fish, molluscs, crustaceans (and amphibians)

Manual of Diagnostic Tests and Vaccines for Terrestrial Animals

Manual of Diagnostic Tests for Aquatic Animals

what are in the codes
What are in the Codes?
  • Recommended measures to be used by Veterinary Authorities or other Competent Authorities
    • to establish health regulations for the safe importation of animals and animal products
    • while avoiding unjustified trade restrictions
principles in the codes
Principles in the Codes
  • adopted by OIE Members’ by consensus during General Session
  • WTO obligations complied with
  • scientific basis for recommendations
  • credible health certification
contents of the terrestrial code
Contents of the TerrestrialCode
  • Part 1 - General provisions

Section 1.1. – General Definitions and Notification of Animal Diseases

Section 1.2 - Obligations and Ethics in International Trade (incl. certification procedures)

Section 1.3 - Risk Analysis

Section 1.4 - Import/Export Procedures

contents of the terrestrial code1
Contents of the TerrestrialCode
  • Part 2 – Disease specific Chapters, e.g.
    • FMD
    • BSE
    • avian influenza, etc.
  • within each chapter, articles on
    • description of pathogen / disease
    • determining status of a country, zone or compartment
    • ‘safe’ commodities irrespective of country status
    • recommendations for other commodities

Total 84 in 2007 Code

(Bovine, sheep and goat, swine, equine bees etc.)

contents of the terrestrial code2
Contents of the Terrestrial Code
  • Part 3 – Issue Specific Appendices

Section 3.1 - Diagnostics tests for international trade

Section 3.2 - Collection / processing of semen

Section 3.3 - Collection / processing of embryos & ova Section 3.4 - Biosecurity in establishments

Section 3.5 - Identification and traceability of live animals

Section 3.6 - Inactivation of pathogens and vectors

Section 3.7 - Animal welfare

Section 3.8 - Disease surveillance systems

Section 3.9 - Antimicrobial resistance

contents of the terrestrial code3
Contents of the Terrestrial Code
  • Part 4 - Model international veterinary certificates

Section 4.1 - Live animals

Section 4.2 - Products of animal origin

1 setting health measures
1. Setting health measures

Import measures aim to minimise the risks to animal and public health associated with trade;

Options allowed by WTO:

1. Members to base their health measures on OIE international standards such as the Code; or

2. Use of scientific risk analysis

- when there is no appropriate standard;

- when a Member requires more protection than that provided by the OIE standard;

2 member country obligations
2. Member Country obligations

If international trade in animal commodities is to be conducted safely and without unjustified restrictions, trading partners must meet their obligations as members of the OIE and of the WTO

notification obligations
Notification obligations

Code Ch 1.1.2. Notification of diseases and epidemiological information

obliges Members’ to make available to others, through the OIE, information necessary to minimise the spread of animal diseases of international significance and to assist in improving the worldwide control of these diseases;

general obligations ch 1 2 1
General obligations (Ch 1.2.1.)

To maximise harmonisation of the sanitary aspects of international trade, Members’ should base their import health measures on OIE standards;

The animal health situation in the exporting country, the transit country(ies) and in the importing country, should be considered in determining the health measures;

Certification requirements should be exact and concise, and should clearly reflect the agreed positions of the trading partners.

importing country obligations
Importing country obligations

Import health measures should:

comply with the national level of protection chosen for animal and public health;

only be for the exclusion of pathogens/diseases:

- not present in the importing country or if present, are subject to an official control program;

- if pathogens/diseases are subject to official control programs, should not provide a higher level of protection on imports than the protection provided for the same pathogens/diseases within that country;

- which are OIE listed, unless the importing country has identified the pathogen as presenting a significant risk for that country (in an IRA).

exporting country obligations
Exporting country obligations

Be prepared to supply to the importing country information relevant to the safety of the traded commodity:

e.g. outcomes of any evaluation of its veterinary services, surveillance information, risk analyses

3 determining import health measures
3. Determining import health measures

Utilising information in WAHID

Hazard identification

Using the Codes



Animal Health Information Department

information in wahid
Information in WAHID

WAHID provides a comprehensive range of information for a specific Member Country, a region or a group of selected countries.

information in wahid cont
Information in WAHID (cont…)

Members that claim freedom from a specified disease are listed in WAHID:

OIE officially recognises freedom from 4 diseases only (FMD, Rinderpest, CBPP, BSE);

for others, concerns of trading partners need to be addressed with the OIE Member .

WAHID allows two countries to be compared with regard to their disease status, based on their most recent six monthly reports.

hazard identification
Hazard identification

first step in the process of determining import health measures

‘the process of identifying the hazards (pathogens) that could be introduced into the importing country through the commodity’

Preliminary hazard list - use WAHID to compare disease statuses of importing and exporting countries

hazard identification cont
Hazard identification (cont…)

second step - refine the list of hazards:

-‘probable hazards’ – present in the exporting country but absent from importing country

- ‘possible hazards’ – insufficient information available. Should be retained pending further information which may allow the pathogen to be removed from the list or confirm that it’s correctly listed

‘unlikely to be hazards’ – absent from both countries or present in importing country

hazard identification cont1
Hazardidentification (cont...)
  • Important inputs for hazard identification include:
    • Credibility of VS (which may be supported by an OIE PVS evaluation),
    • Transparency (i.e. surveillance and reporting systems)
    • Capacity to control and prevent diseases, including the use of compartmentalisation and zoning as provided for in the OIE Code

……..of the exporting country.

  • The OIE Code provides Guidelines in these
hazard identification cont2
Hazardidentification (cont...)

In summary: to classify a hazard:

  • it should be relevant to the commodity to be imported;
  • its presence in the exporting country cannot be ruled out;
  • it should not be present in the importing country or if present, it should be the subject of official control or eradication measures
hazard identification cont3
Hazardidentification (cont...)

EXAMPLE: Preliminary hazard list – New Zealand IRA for sheep & goat genetic material

using the code
Using the Code

Chapters in Part 2 of the Code address a single disease and includes:

a list of commodities considered not to require any disease-specific measures, irrespective of the status of the exporting country for the disease:

i.e.‘safe’ commodities

Code: ‘regardless of the <X disease> status of the exporting country, Veterinary Authorities should authorise without restriction the import or transit through their territory of the following commodities…’

e.g. BSE: deboned skeletal muscle meat (with conditions), milk; BTV: beef, milk; RVF: milk.

using the code1
Using the Code…

a list of commodities considered to require health measures;

lists requirements which should be met by a country/zone/compartment to achieve a specified disease status:

e.g. 'disease free country', 'free zone with vaccination', 'moderate risk', 'free flock‘

using the code2
Using the Code…

EXAMPLE: FMD - Code recommendations for trade in commodities

using the code3
Using the Code…

where there is no recommendation for a particular commodity in a Code chapter, it means that OIE experts have not yet developed relevant health measures:

in this case, a country should base its import health measures for that commodity on a scientific risk analysis.

(The OIE has developed a ‘Handbook on Import Risk Analysis for Animals and Animal Products’)

drawing up health certificates
Drawing up health certificates

use the model certificates presented in Part 4 of the Code as templates, with the contents of the certificate being adapted to the commodity as required.


World organisation for animal health

12 rue de Prony

75017 Paris, France

Tel: 33 (0)1 44 15 18 88

Fax: 33 (0)1 42 67 09 87