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New Zealand mulls changes to livestock exports by sea after ship capsizes

11 September 2020

New Zealand has launched a review of its livestock exports by sea one week after a ship carrying nearly 6,000 cows and 43 crew members capsized off Japan.

Reuters reports that Gulf Livestock 1, which left New Zealand’s Napier Port for China sank during storms associated with Typhoon Maysak.

Japan's coastguards have suspended search operations, after two crewmen were rescued while another died after being found unconscious. Thirty-six Filipino crew members, as well as two New Zealanders and two Australians are still missing.

New Zealand's Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) said livestock exporters must obtain an Animal Welfare Export Certificate (AWEC) and meet certain conditions for export before animals leave New Zealand.

The independent review will look at assurances it receives when it considers an application for export of livestock by sea, it said.

The MPI said the current suspension of cattle livestock exports that was put in place after the incident will remain until the review was completed, which is expected to take about a month.

"At the heart of our decision to temporarily suspend cattle livestock exports is a commitment to helping ensure people and animals on livestock export boats are safe," MPI said in a statement.

“We are working closely with exporters, who have provided assurances that animals currently on pre-export isolation farms are in good condition and well looked after.”

UAE-based Gulf Navigation, which owned the vessel, said in a statement on Thursday 10 September that it was carrying cattle destined to join the Chinese dairy farming and breeding programme.

Read more about this story here.

Source: Reuters


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