By Modupe Gbadeyanka
The government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of Chinaon Wednesday announced a ban on the importation of poultry meat and products from two local municipalities of South Africa.
A statement issued by Hong Kong explained that the move was caused by the recent outbreak of “highly pathogenic H5N8 avian influenza in Pixley ka Seme Local Municipality and Abaqulusi Local Municipality, South Africa.”
According to the statement, the ban is “with immediate effect” and aimed to “protect public health in Hong Kong.”
A spokesman for the Centre for Food Safety (CFS) of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department disclosed that no poultry meat or poultry eggs were imported from South Africa in the first six months of this year.
He explained that government’s decision was influenced by a notification from the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) about outbreaks of highly pathogenic H5N8 avian influenza in Pixley ka Seme Local Municipality and Abaqulusi Local Municipality, South Africa.
“The CFS has contacted the South African authorities over the issue and will closely monitor information issued by the OIE on avian influenza outbreaks.
“Appropriate action will be taken in response to the development of the situation,” the spokesman said in the statement.
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