Australian Agriculture Minister to Visit Indonesia Over FMD Outbreak

Diana Mariska
Cattle infected with the foot-and-mouth disease, or FMD, in East Java. (Photo: Antara)
Cattle infected with the foot-and-mouth disease, or FMD, in East Java. (Photo: Antara) - Australian Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries, and Forestry Murray Watt will hold “face-to-face” talks with the Indonesian authorities during his visit to Jakarta this week on the handling of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) outbreak.

As confirmed by Department of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Forestry on Tuesday, July 12, through the visit, the Australian government looks to support Indonesia’s efforts to contain FMD and prevent its spread in Australia.

“This high-level delegation demonstrates a united stand between government and the farm sector, to ensure we keep Australian agriculture safe,” the statement read.

Watt will be accompanied with officials from the Department, including Australia’s Chief Veterinary Officer Dr Mark Schipp, along with National Farmers’ Federation President Fiona Simson.

The Department said the visit is the next step in Prime Minister Anthony Albanese government’s effort to combat FMD, building on new biosecurity measures introduced, including extra screening of travelers, luggage and mail, biosecurity detector dogs, more information for travelers and signage in airports.

The Australian government has issued alerts for arriving travelers to prevent the spread of FMD in the country. It warns travelers to not bring meat or dairy products to Australia and to ensure any equipment, clothing, or shoes brought into Australia are clean and free from soil and manure. Travelers are also ordered to declare anything that presents a possible FMD risk to a biosecurity officer for inspection on arrival in Australia.

“The Albanese Government is taking strong action on FMD at home and abroad. This two-pronged approach is about strengthening our biosecurity defenses at home, and supporting Indonesia to manage and contain the outbreak there,” Minister Watt said in the statement.

During his visit to Indonesia last month, PM Albanese reportedly offered vaccines and technical expertise to assist Indonesia responding to FMD.

Tag # indonesia australia relations # foot and mouth disease # fmd outbreak # animal disease # murray watt # anthony albanese

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