IFAW welcomes cooperation agreement between World Organisation for Animal Health and International Coalition for Animal Welfare

International Fund for Animal Welfare's picture

The International Coalition for Animal Welfare (ICFAW) has announced the adoption by OIE Member Countries of a cooperation agreement between the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and ICFAW. This agreement will further advance this close working partnership to help improve animal welfare globally through the effective implementation of OIE animal welfare standards and guidelines.

As a founding member of ICFAW, the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) warmly welcomes the cooperation agreement between OIE and ICFAW as we believe it can further advance work to improve animal welfare around the globe, also in relation to wildlife trade. The global trade in wildlife – legal or illegal – can lead to disease outbreaks and can threaten livestock, livelihoods, native wildlife populations and ecosystems. We stand ready to facilitate increased efforts to implement the 2015 agreement of OIE and the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species on animal health and welfare issues worldwide with the objective to safeguard biodiversity and protect animals.

“I would like to recognize the important role of the ICFAW coalition and each of its members and the contribution they make to the implementation of the OIE Global Strategy on Animal Welfare. This has been recognized by the cooperation agreement adopted by the Delegates at the OIE 86th General Session”, said Matthew Stone, Deputy Director General - OIE.

“The agreement covers cooperation activities on the roles and responsibilities of the veterinary profession on animal welfare, cooperation on the development and revision of international animal welfare standards and guidelines that are relevant to both organizations, ICFAW and OIE; and the development of a dialogue and sharing of positions on common issues of interest to animal welfare NGOs as represented by ICFAW and the OIE.”

Alexandra Hammond-Seaman, Chair of ICFAW, added that “ICFAW was formed in 2001 to represent non-governmental animal welfare organisations from all over the world at the OIE. We are currently a coalition of 17 member organisations and the coalition continues to expand. ICFAW organisations work in over 150 countries worldwide raising the standard of animal welfare globally.

“In recent years ICFAW and OIE have established excellent collaboration and many ICFAW members are supporting and participating in OIE lead initiatives developed to assist implementation. We are delighted that in this General Session a formal cooperation agreement between ICFAW and OIE has been adopted and we believe that by working together we can better meet the animal welfare challenges ahead and promote good animal welfare practices, which ultimately benefit animals and people.”



The World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) is an intergovernmental organisation recognised by the World Trade Organization as a reference organisation for international standards concerning the sanitary safety of international trade of animals and products of animal origin and zoonoses, and is in charge of improving animal health, veterinary public health and animal welfare worldwide, as well as transparency of the global animal disease situation. There are currently 182 OIE Member Countries.

The International Coalition for Animal Welfare (ICFAW) is a non-profit, non-governmental organisation representing non-governmental animal welfare organisations from all over the world at the OIE. There are currently 17 ICFAW member organisations.

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