Commissioner Andriukaitis in Sofia to discuss African Swine Fever

European Health Commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis comes to Sofia tomorrow to attend the high-level coordination and preparedness meeting on African Swine Fever (ASF) in South-East Europe. The meeting will take place in the context of the Fourteenth Meeting of the Standing Group of Experts on ASF in Europe and is expected to lead to further technical coordination in Europe.

This meeting continues the discussions that took place this year in March in Prague and in May in Paris, and will be attended by representatives of affected Member States, as well as Russia, Belarus, Ukraine and Moldova. Ahead of the event Commissioner Andriukaitis said: "I will urge ministers to take swift and coordinated action to minimise the chance of introduction - and possible further spread - in all the countries. We all know what the introduction of the disease means: a devastating impact on the production of pig meat with long lasting social consequences, affecting – in a dramatic way – our vulnerable rural territories.  

According to the commissioner, we need to take any possible action to limit the spreading of the disease and to pave the way for its future long term eradication. It is essential that all countries ensure a high level of awareness, preparedness and bio-security on commercial farms. Information campaigns, in different languages, on all the main highways in Europe is one practical tool that helps spread knowledge of the risks in the public domain.

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