Regional Animal Health Center for North Africa
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The Regional Animal Health Center for North Africa (RAHC-NA) is a facility run by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization Emergency Centre for Transboundary Animal Diseases (FAO-ECTAD). It has been in action since May 2007. The purpose of RAHC-NA is to provide a framework in order to coordinate and harmonize strategies for monitoring and evaluating activities for the control of animal diseases in the region, including zoonoses and avian Influenza in particular. Thus, the interventions of the RCAH-NA are mainly focused on understanding the fields of animal health, public health, but also food safety. The idea of developing FAO-ECTAD/Regional Animal Health Centers (RAHC) was first launched during the International Conference on Avian and Human Influenza II, held at Beijing, China on January 2006. Under this initiative, FAO started developing RAHCs in all sensitive areas.
The RAHC-NA covers up Maghreb countries: Mauritania, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Libya, though most of its activities are also developed in coordination with Egypt. The RAHC-NA is also seeking to bring both Mediterranean shores into contact and encourage coordination and joint work between the countries of North Africa and Southern Europe through the Mediterranean Network for Animal Health (REMESA) initiative.
Located in Tunis, Tunisia, at the headquarters of FAO sub-regional office, the RAHC-NA was created within the context of the Global Framework for the Progressive Control of Transboundary Animal Diseases (GF-TADS), signed on May 2004 between FAO and OIE.
GF-TADS is an initiative to combine the experience and expertise of both organizations in the fight against Transboundary Animal Diseases in order to strengthen capacities of developing countries and assist them in setting specific control programs of certain Transboundary Animal Diseases according to priority areas.
RAHC-NA is supported mainly by the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation for Development (AECID), but also by the Canadian International Development Agency (ACDI) and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA).