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Tuesday, November 29, 2022

New Zealand Forbids Export of Live Animals

Damien O'Connor, the Minister of Agriculture, claimed that the legislation prohibiting the export would safeguard New Zealand's position as a pioneer in animal welfare standards around the world

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Sadaf Hasan
Sadaf Hasan
Aspiring reporter covering trending topics

NEW ZEALAND: The export of livestock by sea will be prohibited starting in April 2023, which will affect New Zealand’s major trading partners, notably Australia and China.

The restriction was properly announced and was prompted by the capsizing of a ship off the coast of Japan in 2020 carrying over 6,000 cows and 43 crew members.

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Damien O’Connor, the Minister of Agriculture, claimed that the legislation prohibiting the export would safeguard New Zealand’s position as a pioneer in animal welfare standards around the world.

He added that the measure would have no effect on exports and that it would “reinforce and build on New Zealand’s reputation as a safe and ethical supplier of high-quality food goods.”

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Animal rights organisations have waged ongoing campaigns against live exports for many years in Australia and New Zealand. Numerous creatures drown when they go wrong, typically in their millions.

A live export ship sunk in Sudan earlier this year, resulting in the drowning of more than 15,000 sheep, while 14,000 sheep perished in a capsize in 2020. Three months of stranding at sea in 2021 resulted in the deaths of many of the 3,000 cattle, who were also severely dehydrated or starved.

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Even in the best-case situation, a trip to New Zealand is typically difficult for animals due to its extreme isolation. Animals in New Zealand spend a lot of time at sea, which increases the risk of heat stress and other risks to their welfare, according to O’Connor.

“The voyage times and the journey through the tropics to the northern hemisphere markets will always impose challenges,” the company said. “Despite any regulatory measures we could put in place.”

On April 30, 2023, the nation will no longer export any animals via sea. Last year, New Zealand exported 134,722 cattle; live exports made up roughly 0.6% of total primary sector exports. Only animals for breeding, not for killing, are exported from New Zealand.

Animal rights advocates and the Green Party have praised the action. The Greens’ spokeswoman on animal welfare, Chlöe Swarbrick, remarked, “This could not have arrived fast enough.” Animals have endured years of agony in the live export industry.

The measure was opposed by the opposition National party, which claimed it was an “irrational” and “disproportionate” response to “the terrible drowning of the stock ship Gulf Livestock 1.”

They contend that the decision to ban live exports could result in a $472 million drop in GDP.

Britain announced intentions to outlaw the export of live animals from England and Wales for slaughter and fattening in 2020, but the proposal has not yet been implemented.

Anthony Albanese, the prime minister of Australia, recently restated the commitment of his administration to stopping the trade but added that it would not be phased out until 2025.

From 2015 to 2019, the value of live exports by sea was roughly NZ$60 million ($33.58 million), or 0.2% of New Zealand’s primary sector export earnings.

However, live animal exports via air freight are still permitted.

Also Read: Child Abuse Victims in New Zealand Appeal to Pope Francis for Help

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