Following a presentation at Thursday's meeting of the Cabinet by the Council of Agriculture on Taiwan's efforts to resist the international epidemic of African swine fever (ASF), Premier Su Tseng-chang said that in the first half of the year, the government has received widespread praise from the public for its efforts to protect hog farmers by preventing the spread of the disease into Taiwan. However, beginning in July, the rate of pork product samples from China testing positive for the virus has been climbing. These results show that there can be no letting up in Taiwan's battle against ASF, nor can any agency afford to let down its guard.
Noting that although flights between Taiwan and Russia resumed in May, the premier said that it was not until July 19 that action was taken to include flights from Russia in the implementation of Taiwan's existing policy of 100-percent inspection of carry-on baggage on flights from ASF-infected areas. The premier cited this example as a communications failure in an inter-ministerial system that must always maintain perpetual vigilance.
Calling for more mutual reporting and horizontal communications among ministries and agencies responsible for the wide range of tasks necessary to fight ASF, Premier Su emphasized a zero-tolerance approach to any leaks in Taiwan's defense against the epidemic.