Biosecurity reform bill passes into law

The most significant changes to the Biosecurity Act in 15 years were brought into place this week, when the Biosecurity Law Reform bill passed into law.

The bill makes a wide range of amendments to the Act, along with related amendments to four other Acts.

“New Zealand has a highly effective biosecurity system which is recognised as world-leading, but the legislation has not kept pace with the way the system has had to evolve to meet ever-growing challenges,” says Primary Industries Minister David Carter.

“The amended Act covers the areas of border security, biosecurity, joint decision-making on newly detected harmful organisms and on-going management of established pests. the reforms will enable better use of information to target risks and encouage partnerships in the management of potential biosecurity incursions.”

A key plank of the reforms is the development of government-industry agreements on preparing for, and responding to, newly detected pests and diseases and for sharing the costs of jointly-agreed activities, the Minister says.

“Protecting New Zealand from biosecurity risks cannot be the role of government alone,” says Carter. “Industry expertise needs to be brought to the decision-making table to help improve prioritisation and our preparedness to respond to incursions.”

 

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