Following the Executive Order 13759 by which the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) has been designated as a Public International Organization entitled to enjoy certain privileges, exemptions and immunities, the OIE announced June 21 that it will establish a liaison office in the U.S. later this year.
Created in 1924, the OIE’s missions are to ensure transparency in the global animal disease situation; safeguard world trade by publishing health standards for international trade in animals and animal products; and encourage international solidarity in the control of animal diseases in particular by improving the legal framework and resources of national veterinary services.
With respect to its standard setting mandate, the OIE is recognized as the reference organization for animal health and zoonoses by the World Trade Organization (WTO). Zoonoses are diseases that can pass from animals to humans.
Over the past few years, the OIE has developed a number of activities to foster improved interaction with interested stakeholders through public-private partnerships. These partnerships will seek to stimulate increased investments in animal health and welfare, as well as the establishment of development programs targeting the livestock sector.
This OIE U.S. office will be hosted by the Institute for Infectious Animal Diseases based in College Station, Texas, a unit within the Texas A&M University System that was recognized as an OIE Collaborating Centre in the domain of biological threat reduction in 2014. The OIE office is expected to open on Oct. o1, 2017, with the aims of increasing collaboration, establishing partnerships and maintaining donor relations with several U.S. state agencies and departments, as well as organizations based in the U.S. that have an interest in global animal health and animal welfare. This office will also offer support to the OIE headquarters based in Paris, France, accomplish the OIE’s Sixth Strategic Plan.
The OIE currently has a total of 181 member countries and 12 regional and sub-regional representations located on each continent.