Regional Representation for Americas

The OIE National Focal Point on Animal Welfare

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Terms of Reference for the OIE National Focal Point on Animal Welfare

During the 76th General Session of the World Assembly of National Delegates in May 2008 the importance of the focal point for information on animal diseases was re-iterated and Delegates were also requested to nominate additional focal points for wildlife, veterinary products, animal production food safety, animal welfare and aquatic animals.

As detailed in the final report of the General Session, the responsibilities of the focal points are under the authority of the OIE Delegate. Any information transmitted to the OIE from the different focal points needs to be transmitted under the designated authority of the OIE Delegate. This practice would equally apply, if focal points are located in other Departments or Ministries not under jurisdiction of the Veterinary Authority, as from a legal perspective, the OIE considers the official OIE Delegate, to be the unique representative of the country.

Details on proposed tasks of the national focal point for animal welfare:

1. to establish a network of animal welfare experts within his country or to communicate with the existing network;

2. to establish and maintain a dialogue with the Competent Authority for animal welfare in his country, and to facilitate cooperation and communication among several authorities where responsibility is shared;

3. to receive from the OIE Headquarters copies of the reports of the Terrestrial Animal Health Standards Commission (Code Commission), including reports of the OIE Animal Welfare Working Group and other relevant reports;

4. to conduct the in-country consultation process with recognised animal welfare experts on draft texts proposed in those reports as well as draft standards proposed by the Code Commission when dealing with animal welfare; and

5. to prepare comments for the Delegate on each of the relevant meeting reports reflecting the scientific view and position of the individual OIE Member and/or the region, including comments on the proposals for new or revised OIE standards related to animal welfare.

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