The third Global Conference on Aquatic Animal Health opened on January 20 in Ho Chi Minh City with an emphasis on the role of State management of aquaculture health.

Bernard Vallat, General Director of the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), said while aquaculture products account for nearly half of seafood supply worldwide, diseases have caused significant damage to aquaculture, bringing adverse impacts on the economy of some countries and regions.

Therefore, it is necessary to boost the State management of aquaculture health services and the effectively implementation of policies in the field as well as OIE standards to prevent and curb diseases in aquaculture, he said.

The conference will also discuss the role and responsibility of key factors in the production chain, including farmers, processors, private veterinarians and aquatic animal health experts as well as the importance of the cooperative relationship among these factors, he added.

Addressing the conference, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Vu Van Tam said that as a member nation of the OIE, Vietnam commits to working closely with the international community for the effective implementation of aquatic animal health work, thus contributing to the effective control of diseases as well as antibiotic content in aquatic products.

The deputy minister said the aquaculture industry has to date made significant contributions to the country’s economic development but also pointed out that the sector is facing unsustainable development.

Vietnam, he said, is taking many measures to prevent and control diseases as well as the use of chemicals and antibiotics in aquaculture.

The export of aquatic products earned the country 7.9 billion USD in 2014, an annual increase of 18 percent.-VNA