Australia welcomes Vietnam's ban on wildlife imports

(VOVWORLD) - The Australian Government welcomed an order signed by Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc on Thursday banning all imports of wildlife dead or alive, including eggs and larvae. 

The order also merits tougher penalties for crimes involving the trade in wildlife.

The move comes amid increased scrutiny of the health risks of the wildlife trade as the world deals with the new coronavirus, which is thought to have jumped from animals to humans.

Australian Agriculture Minister David Littleproud said Vietnam's crackdown was a huge win for global public health.

"Vietnam is reducing the risk of future pandemics and showing the world how we can manage these markets into the future," Mr. Littleproud said.

He said the Vietnamese Government should be congratulated for its leadership in taking an "evidence-based approach to reducing the risk of animal-to-human diseases being spread.”