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Indonesia lifts lumpy skin ban on Australian live cattle exports

Australian Associated Press - September 9, 2023

Melissa Meehan – Indonesia has lifted its suspension of Australian live export cattle, declaring it safe from lumpy skin disease.

The country had stopped the importation from four Australian facilities in early August after its authorities found a small number of Australian cattle had been detected with the disease.

The disease, which causes blisters and reduces milk production, is transmitted by insect bites, is highly infectious and affects cattle and buffalo. It poses no risk to humans.

Federal Agriculture Minister Murray Watt said the lifted suspension meant the live cattle and buffalo export trade from Australia to Indonesia can resume.

"The announcement is testament to our calm and considered approach in response to this issue," he said in a statement on Saturday.

"We have always maintained that Australia is free of lumpy skin disease, demonstrated by the results of extensive testing undertaken across Northern Australia."

The Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry said the cancellation of the ban follows technical discussions with Indonesian authorities and the provision of negative test results for lumpy skin disease in Australian cattle and buffalo from recent investigations.

"The department re-confirms that LSD has never been detected in Australia and we remain free from the disease," acting deputy secretary of the Agricultural Trade Group Nicola Hinder said on Saturday.

"Indonesia's decision to lift the suspension on four registered establishments, and its restrictions on a further three registered establishments is welcomed by the Australian government and industry."

She said the department will continue to engage with stakeholders to provide the necessary assurances to trading partners on animal health status.

The news follows a decision by Malaysia to also scrap its ban on all live cattle exports from Australia.

Source: https://www.theage.com.au/national/indonesia-lifts-lumpy-skin-ban-on-australian-live-cattle-exports-20230909-p5e3e0.htm