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Lithuania considers fence to protect against ASF

Lithuania needs a fence on the border with Belarus to protect the country from the further spread of African swine fever (ASF), says the head of the State Food and Veterinary Service of Lithuania Jonas Milius. The approximate cost of the fence would be €12 mln.

On Monday, EU agriculture ministers in Brussels consulted on measures that could be taken following the discovery of the virus in Lithuania among wild boars prompting Russia to ban pork imports from the EU. The opinion of the veterinary specialists was that the creation of the fence may be one of the most effective tools to prevent further ASF outbreaks in EU.

"It is very difficult to control wild fauna, so we have to concentrate our forces, do whatever it takes, and use every available tool, which would help prevent the spread of disease. I think that today, in light of the implementation of pork restrictions, we all must take this responsibility, as previously our wishes were not fulfilled. This is about the physical barriers - the fence - we know that, especially in the border areas there is a lot of boar traffic. When there are no physical barriers, we will constantly have problems," said Milius.

Experts note that the main threat to Lithuania's pig industry still comes from wild boars, migrating from Belarus. The recent outbreak of ASF in Lithuania may force the EU authorities to allocate money for the construction of the fence.

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