Exports to outside the EU
Exports of animals and animal products ensure UK presence on the global market and thus enhance the political and economic role of the UK. Our role in facilitating Export Health Certificates (EHCs) supports the UK economy and global trade in animals and animal products, whilst also addressing global efficiency in food production, global food supply and relations with food, non-food and farming sectors.
The conditions permitting the export of animals and animal based products to non-EU countries are set by the importing countries’ animal and food health administrations. Products need to be accompanied by EHCs that attest to the fulfilment of those conditions. The conditions are often based on agreed international norms. However, where there are particular human or animal health concerns, the authorities in the importing country can go beyond them and impose stricter conditions.
Negotiating EHCs for new markets or to regain lost ones can be long and laborious with potential severe political and economic risk if mis-handled; in most cases, government intervention is needed.
Access to markets is affected by the animal health status of the exporting country, and supporting industry in regaining lost markets continues to be required long after a disease outbreak has been controlled. Unlike trade with EU Member States, negotiations with third countries can be difficult and can often only take place through inter-governmental contact.
In line with wider government policies, we recognise the relevant industry sectors themselves need to take greater responsibility for activities which are of direct benefit to them. This could include paying for services which previously have been offered free. In addition, we are seeking ways to bring our delivery partners such as Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency (AHVLA) and the Food Standards Agency (FSA), to be more involved in these activities. Core Defra would, however, retain overall competence because of our lead role.
Involvement of the various industry sectors in the export certification process encourages industry to help itself and is in line with the principle of beneficiary, not tax payer, pays, and is fully in line with our wider Departmental objectives and the Animal Health and Welfare Strategy.
Compartmentalisation is a scheme which aims to allow approved premises to continue to trade internationally during disease outbreaks without the risk of spreading notifiable diseases.
- Export Health Certificates (see “downloads”, below)
4 June 2013
- Export Health Certificates List (pdf, 800 KB)