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Macau overturns 14-year poultry import ban

Macau’s government has announced it will revoke a ban on poultrymeat from some Asian countries that has been in place since 2004.

A chief executive order posted by the country’s Official Gazette announced the relaxation of the long-standing ban as it considered the risk of avian influenza to be reduced.

Checks and controls

In 2004 most types of poultrymeat, eggs and hatching chicks were banned from a broad range of countries including Korea, Vietnam, Japan, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Indonesia, Taiwan and the provinces of Guangxi, Hubei and Hunan.

The order revoking the ban says poultry products will now be permitted from those countries, subject to the normal checks and controls.

“Applications for the importation of poultry and products of avian origin from any country or region of the world are fully processed in accordance with the Macao Special Administrative Region and international control practices, with control of the import of these goods.

“Therefore, it is considered unnecessary to prohibit or impose restrictions on the importation of goods from certain countries or regions.”

Nearby Hong Kong produces a weekly summary of avian influenza cases, and notes that the latest reported case of the H7N9 virus infecting humans was in February last year. The latest report of the H5N6 strain infecting a human was in November 2018.

No H5N1 infections were recorded in 2018, it adds.