Health Certificate Cross Border Horse Transports No Longer Needed

The countries Belgium, the Netherlands, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and France signed on the 15th of May a memorandum of agreement concerning the transport of horses. This in consequence of a new initiative of the Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food-chain (FAVV in Belgium). The main idea behind this agreement is to simplify the transport on administrative and financial grounds. Moreover harmonises this memorandum the requirements relating to the transport of equine species.
As from the first of June 2017 equine species which are transported between these specific countries no longer need an inspection by an official veterinarian before their departure. Besides that they no longer need to have a health certificate with them during their transport.

The main reason the FAVV thought their initiative was appropriate is because of the similar high standard of health of these countries concerning animals. Furthermore there is no specific risk of health, which is the FAVV’s top priority. 

On the condition that the animals shall return to their land of departure when the transit has ended, this cancelation measure is related to the transportation of:
- Equine species who are ridden (or being guided) for sportive or recreational purposes (or are meant to).
- Equine species which take place in cultural demonstrations.
- Equine species which are destined for grazing or working activities, for a maximum term of 90 days.
- Equine species which are transported because of veterinary reasons (including actions focused on reproduction, in case these actions are carried in a veterinary clinic or by a veterinarian.

To benefit from this measure the Equidae must be identified according to the legislation. This means that they have to be in the possession of a passport which is in accordance with the European legislation and besides that they must be identified by a microchip (of which the barcode matches with the code in the passport). On top of that the animals need to be registered in the central database of the partner country where they usually stay.
The countries came also to an agreement regarding to the common interpretation of the types of transport of equine species which are not subject to the requirements of the legislation regarding to the transit of living horses. 

An equal memorandum of agreement applied to three of the four countries already. The range of transport has now expanded to France. This at the pleasure of the other countries and the FAVV.

A circular in multiple languages will be published by the FAVV as soon as possible.

Source: http://www.favv-afsca.fgov.be