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Most Asian South-Eastern countries, such as Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam, are importing pork from Thailand. Thailand is one of the largest pork producing nations in Asia and has recently made an announcement for pork manufacturers to be aware of African Swine Fever, a deadly virus spreads from contaminated pork.
According to Northeast Today, the country has been working on strengthening the custom inspection at the airports and border patrol line, looking for illegal traders. The aim is to make sure that there is a consistency action of reporting of suspicious pork products crossing into the country. There had been cases where contaminated pork has been detected by the customs at the airport and the border, though the product was not produced by local farmers. Permanent Secretary of Thailand’s Agricultural Ministry, Anan Suwannarat, stated that “we’re on red alert for the pig virus. We’re trying everything to prevent it from spreading to Thailand.”
There are three primary reasons as to why the announcement gave advantages for the Kingdom of Thailand. For one, it provides essential information for the people of Thailand to find the safest diet. Next, it also provides private health and nonprofit organizations to participate in getting rid of containment products. Organizations like The Thai Swine Raisers Association also got involved. The Association stated that the government had a complication with border blocking disease; however, authorities also comprehend that the country’s long porous borders actually increase the chances for the disease to get in. The government is initializing sensible method to handle these issues. Lastly, it also causes major economic issues. According to The Asia Times, the nation exports about 800 pigs yearly to their neighbouring countries, and with current statistics, it is a risk for the countries economy if those countries decided not to import the pork due to the crisis it is facing. The Livestock Department stated that officials have been confiscating pork products for months, 550 times since August, and it has detected 43 lots with the virus.
A month ago, the government approved a $4.7 million budget to prepare for an outbreak, after being told that if half the country’s pigs are infected it could cause economic losses of about $1 billion. Furthermore, Thailand is facing even more pressure as the United States is urging the nation to end ‘unwarranted’ ban on America pork meat based on Global Meat news article. The United States is claiming that it will remove Thailand’s Generalized System of Preference (GSP).
The nation is assessing its crisis management strategies on the incident in order to maintain the well-being of its people, looking for assistance from the private sectors and protecting its economy. With the current situation, the nation should first address the most essential asset, the health of its people.