THE livestock sector is in great need for reform in terms of policy and legislation, says Agriculture Minister Lieutenant Colonel Inia Seruiratu.
Addressing the Commonwealth Veterinary Association at the Tanoa International Hotel in Nadi, Lt-Col Seruiratu said the government had seen great potential in the livestock sector, hence investing significant amount of budget to continue implementing some key livestock development programs.
"This commitment level goes on to say that livestock matter is of great importance to us, which have an increasingly important role in the future of our population," he said.
"The ministry is currently working to review some of the outdated livestock legislation, particularly our dairy and meat acts, which are both very old pieces of legislations, and are currently under review.
"I am very optimistic that Fiji could play an integral part to contribute to the upgrading of veterinarians' profession in the region through some collaborative initiative by our universities, for example Fiji National University has commenced a diploma in animal health program a few years ago and that was a very commendable move."
Lt-Col Seruiratu said producing our own veterinarians in the region would also make better use of the resources required for this purpose as opposed to sourcing them from often expensive overseas institutions.
"However, partnerships with other high standard veterinary universities within the Commonwealth Veterinary Association member countries would be a positive approach to standardise the accreditation of our qualification.
"I also want to commend our commercial livestock entities, which have been our key stakeholders and have also been very supportive in the preparation of this conference."