AHIC President, Dr Barry Smyth, stated that passage of the Horse Disease Response Levy Bills through the House of Representatives was an important first step to enable the horse industry to become a party to the Emergency Animal Disease Response Agreement (EADRA).
"Through EADRA, the industry is guaranteed the support and financial assistance of government in sharing the burden of fighting future emergency disease outbreaks" Dr Smyth
"Successful eradication of emergency diseases also eliminates ongoing disease management costs, providing further incentive for the industry to become a party to EADRA".
"The ongoing viability of the horse industry could be compromised by a financially devastating disease outbreak.
Involvement in EADRA is like taking out an insurance policy for the industry."
noted that a necessary step for participating in EADRA was to arrive at a suitable levy mechanism, which will enable the horse industry to contribute to part of the costs of future disease responses.
The levy is to be set at zero, which means that no levy will be payable until after an emergency disease response is over.
The Agreement specifies that industry will be consulted up front about the amount of any levy.
Legislation regarding a levy was passed by the House of Representatives
yesterday, and now has been referred to the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee
for further review and consultation.
is committed to contributing to this review process.