Answer – Health crisis in the pig sector – E-000089/2016
A summary of the epidemiological situation for animal diseases in the EU for 2016(1) and for previous years(2) can be found on the Commission’s webpage. The classical swine fever situation has shown a positive trend during the past few years with only one Member State having notified this disease in wild boar in 2015. However, African swine fever (ASF) affects currently five Member States and it is difficult to speculate on the future evolution of both of these diseases given their trans-boundary nature and the challenges related to the required coordination of efforts with neighbouring non-EU countries. It is reminded that in the case of ASF the virus strain is the same as that found in Russia.
While there is an ongoing dispute settlement case under the World Trade Organisation against Russia for the ban imposed on EU live pigs and pig products allegedly for ASF reasons, the Commission continues its efforts to achieve a mutually acceptable solution, in the respect of the international trade norms. Ongoing bilateral negotiations between the EU and Russia may allow the immediate resumption of trade of affected commodities not covered by the Russian embargo (e.g.: offal, fat and lard). To this end, the Commission submitted proposals and on many occasions expressed its readiness to discuss any concerns the other side might have. Unfortunately, Russia has so far not agreed to enter into discussion for an EU-level solution to the ban.