Animal Diseases Surveillance and Response System in Liberia – July 2019

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Animal Diseases Surveillance and Response System in Liberia - July 2019

Liberia is located on the western bulge of Africa, bordered to the north by Guinea, to the east by Côte D’Ivoire, to the west by Sierra Leone, and to the south by the Atlantic Ocean. The Country is divided into 15 political sub-divisions, called Counties. Each County is headed by a Superintendent; the County is also subdivided into Districts, Chiefdoms, Clans, Townships, and communities. The population of Liberia was estimated at 4,503,438 in 2015. Of the total, 49.7% and 50.3% live in rural and urban areas, respectively.

The livestock sector in Liberia is considered a sub-sector that contributes to the economy but its contribution is considered potentially low. However, the sector is one of the main sources of employment, especially in the rural areas. 1 FAOSTAT, 2015 9 The total livestock population in the Country is estimated at 1,139,430 of which; cattle account for 0.9%; sheep, 4.1%; goat, 8%; pig, 5.4% and chickens 81.2%. Traditional livestock production systems are predominant, over 80% of ruminants are kept in traditional village animal husbandry systems. Demand for livestock products greatly outstrips domestic supply; as a result, imports of livestock products and live animals are high. An estimated 19,580 head of cattle, 750 goats and 1500 sheep are imported annually from Guinea, Côte d’Ivoire and Mali for slaughter. In 2009, some 11 million metric tons of meat valued at about US$ 4.3 million were imported (OIE, 2016).