Tong Xuan Chinh, Deputy Director of the Department of Livestock Production (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Australia has suspended the export of cattle to Vietnam as a Vietnamese company violated the Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS), affecting local livestock farming as well as the prestige of Vietnam in general.

Tong Xuan Chinh, Deputy Director of the Department of Livestock Production under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, said Australia’s suspension of cattle shipments to Vietnam since June 13 is unprecedented, but it was foreseeable.

To import livestock from Australia, Vietnamese companies have to comply with all regulations it set up such as those relating to abattoirs, slaughtering and meat ​processing. Australian exporters monitor the entire process from shipping, caging, farming to slaughtering.

The ESCAS is to ensure the humane slaughter of livestock that all importers must satisfy, he said, adding that only when businesses meet the standards does Australia export cattle. Australia also gave instructions and training to Vietnamese slaughterhouses.

However, some abattoirs in Vietnam did not adhere to those regulations, Chinh said.

Animex Hai Phong company was found to have broken ESCAS rules and was not the first case Australia uncovered, but this time the country took strong action in response by suspending cattle exports to Vietnam, he noted.

Australia has previously banned livestock shipments to many other nations committing similar violations like Egypt, Indonesia and Saudi Arabia.

Chinh stressed the suspension has first affected Animex Hai Phong but also undermined Vietnam’s prestige.

The domestic cattle market will not be impacted for the short term. Nonetheless, if the ban prolongs, several major local livestock farming companies will suffer as they have invested in breeding facilities. Meanwhile, Vietnam is also lacking domestic cattle supplies.

The official urged for stronger communications to raise abattoirs and businesses’ awareness of ESCAS adherence. It is also necessary to seek more cattle supply sources such as in South America to prevent supply interruption.-VNA