05 Jun 2014 16:40pm
WINDHOEK, 05 JUN (NAMPA) The N.dollars 2 billion livestock industry will know its fate in the next five days when Namibia once again meets with its South African counterparts to discuss the new livestock export requirements into that country.
The Minister of Agriculture, Water and Forestry (MAWF) John Mutorwa after a closed-door meeting with stakeholders in the meat industry said in a media statement issued on Thursday that in-depth discussions on the matter will continue on 10 June 2014.
It is the MAWFs well-considered position and view, for now, to agree with the Departments of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries when they state that the tentative date set for in-depth discussion on the Standard Operating Procedures, with our industry and other relevant stakeholders is the 10 June 2014, he noted.
A high level bilateral meeting led by the Permanent Secretaries of the MAWF and Ministry of Trade and Industry, Joseph Iita and Dr Malan Lindeque took place on 09 May 2014 in Pretoria, South Africa where the matter was discussed.
On 01 May 2014, the South African government imposed stringent veterinary import conditions on the exportation of all Namibian cattle and small stock.
This has caused serious limitations for farmers, especially those with livestock intended for direct slaughter and feed-lotting.
The proposed measures could have devastating consequences for the local meat industry since South Africa feedlots, abattoirs and informal goat markets located in Kwazulu-Natal are an important market for Namibian animals.
Namibia asked that South Africa postpone the implementation of the new veterinary conditions until a solution is found.
My department remains committed towards the amicable resolution relating to the import of livestock from the Republic of Namibia into the Republic South Africa, Mutorwa added.
Namibia exports approximately 160 000 weaners, 90 000 sheep and 240 000 goats to South Africa annually.