Dr Mark Schipp, Australia’s Chief Veterinary Officer, is travelling to Indonesia for animal health cooperation talks.

Dr Schipp will meet with senior government officials to discuss a range of cooperation activities relating to animal health and biosecurity, including the current outbreak of lumpy skin disease on the island of Sumatra.

“Lumpy skin disease is not present in Australia but the disease is spreading rapidly internationally. Protecting Australia from lumpy skin disease is vital, as an outbreak here would have serious trade impacts across the live animal trade, and for exporters of dairy products, genetic materials, hides and some meat products in addition to animal welfare issues and significant production losses.

“Strengthening our relationship and sharing knowledge is a vital way that we can better protect Australia from exotic pest and disease threats and help one of our most valued neighbours to respond effectively.”

Dr Schipp said he will be meeting with officials to discuss Australia’s cooperation with Indonesia on the current outbreak.

“The Indonesian government is working hard to address the disease outbreak through vaccination and other containment measures, with close support from Australia.”

Australia already works closely with Indonesia on a range of animal health initiatives to combat global animal disease across the region, said Dr Schipp.

“I’ll be meeting with officials from Indonesia’s Directorate General of Livestock and Animal Health Services at the Ministry of Agriculture to discuss animal health and regional interests and building on our bilateral Agriculture Cooperation Memorandum of Understanding recently agreed between Indonesian and Australian governments.”