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Feb 15, 2024

Belizean Cattle Turned away at Mexican Border

On the topic of cattle, last week, up to three truckloads of Belizean cattle were turned away at the Mexican border due to a change in cattle importation regulations. Reportedly, the cattle was stalled by an entire day after being sent back to Belize before being returned the following day. Reporter Britney Gordon has the story.


Jose Abelardo Mai

Jose Abelardo Mai, Minister of Agriculture

“Last week, I think Tuesday three truckloads were returned back to Belize. I’m not sure why or under what technical reason I did have to communicate with the Minister of Agriculture, my counterpart in Mexico City, and the cattle were allowed to leave the following day, but thereafter both countries’ animal health authorities met to decide what was the problem how to solve it.”


Britney Gordon, Reporting

Agriculture Minister Jose Mai told News Five that he along with a number of health directors and representatives from Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA), travelled to Mexico to sort out the matter.


Jose Abelardo Mai

“There we were informed that the protocols had changed. And so we have to adapt to the changes that they have asked us to do. And they asked us a number of things. One is that we have to use an OIRSA vet now, which is not a bad idea. It’s a good idea. We’ll have some additional costs, of course. And two is that we will need to put a corral. I call it a border corral. And they wanted to put it as close as possible to the border for their animal health inspectors to come and do inspection for the cattle to go. They said to us that this is what Guatemala is doing. So We traveled to Guatemala immediately after to look at what they have, the border between Guatemala and Mexico to look at their facility.”


Mai stated that the representatives were able to negotiate an agreement in which Belize would update its facilities to proceed with cattle exportation into Mexico.


Jose Abelardo Mai

“And the most challenging part will be to have a corral near the border within eighteen months. That is the most challenging part, but I’m sure that we will, we already started to work on a plan of how to move forward with that. The important thing, though, is that cattle continue to be exported from Belize from the entire country which is a good thing. Cattle exports can generate up to ninety million. We exported forty thousand head last year. We have about ten thousand consumed locally. So we’re talking maybe Close to ninety million dollars. And the export is very important. So we need to keep the markets open. We need to do what we need to do to keep that market going.”


Britney Gordon for News Five.


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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