House, govt agree to discuss animal and plant quarantine bill

23 June 2016
The House of Representatives and the government have agreed to start discussions over an animal, fish and plant quarantine bill in order to prevent the potential spread of diseases and pests.

Both parties would soon establish a working unit to discuss the bill, which was initiated by the House.

Indonesia has a 1992 law that arranges quarantines for animals, fish and plants. However, the law had not specifically regulated quarantine problems, Agriculture Minister Andi Amran Sulaiman said on Wednesday. Therefore, a new regulation arranging quarantines was very important, he added.

The government submitted a list of problems to the lawmakers of House Commission IV overseeing agriculture, food, forestry, plantations, fisheries and maritime affairs in a hearing at the House complex.

The revision of the existing law aimed at accommodating various things in a quarantine and to align it with the international trade system to ensure the safety of animals. The bill was needed to prevent the movement of organic pests from one country to another, the secretary-general of the Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Ministry, Sjarif Widjaja, said after the meeting.

"The quarantine will act as a gate that limits the organisms' movements," Sjarif said.