2018-07 - Approved export program guidelines

27 July 2018


Document Pages File size
Export Advisory Notice 2018-07 PDF 3 369 KB

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Species: All livestock

Country: All

For information:

  1. Australian Government Accredited Veterinarians
  2. Livestock Exports
  3. Departmental Officer
  4. LiveCorp
  5. ALEC


  • To inform all livestock exporters approved export programs (AEPs) will now be required and guidelines will be made available.
  • To inform exporters they are required to vary their approved arrangement (AA) and submit varied AAs and AEPs by 30 August 2018 to the department for approval in order to continue exporting beyond that date.
  • Updated AA guidelines will also be made available.

Key points

Recent amendments to the Export Control (Animals) Order 2004 mean that all livestock exporters must have an approved export program (AEP) containing instructions for any Australian Government Accredited Veterinarians (AAVs) they engage. The intent of this change is to separate the instructions for the AAV from the approved arrangement and related documents, for clarity and better alignment to the requirements as set out under section 9A of the Export Control Act 1982.  

All livestock exporters are required to vary their AA to remove the AAV specific activities and place the requirements in a separate document, the AEP.

A departmental officer will be allocated to each livestock exporter to assist with the necessary amendments to their approved arrangements and drafting of AEPs. Exporters will be contacted by their officer within the week commencing 30 July 2018.

NOTE: There is no fee for the approval of the AEP and the revised AA, provided the AA is not varied in any other way.


All livestock exporters must:

Prepare approved export programs (AEP) from an existing approved arrangement.

  1. Remove all instructions to accredited veterinarians (land preparation and shipboard veterinarians) from the approved arrangement, the standard export plans for each market, and any management plans.
  2. Include all instructions about records the AAV must make and provide, and any declarations the AAV must make and provide after completing the different program of activities.
  3. Collate the instructions for the land based AAVs in such a way that these instructions, (including records that must be kept, and any declarations that must be made about the implementation and completion of the program), can be issued to each land based AAV preparing consignments for each species and market.
  4. Collate the instructions for the shipboard AAVS in such a way that the instructions, (including records that must be kept, and any declarations to the exporter that must be made about the completion of the program), can be issued to each shipboard veterinarian accompanying consignments.
  5. Submit the draft AEP to the department for approval before 30 August 2018.
  6. Submit the revised AA (which no longer contains instructions to AAVs) to the department for approval before 30 August 2018.


An Approved Export Program (AEP) is defined in subsection 9A(2) of the Export Control Act 1982 as ‘a written program of activities to be undertaken by an accredited veterinarian (AAV) or an authorised officer for the purpose of ensuring the health and welfare of live animals during export activities’. These activities may take place while preparing animals for export through to their disembarkation in the importing country.

The Act further defines export activities, in relation to livestock as:  

  • the preparation of the animals for export and while being transported to their overseas destination, and
  • any other activity involving the animals, occurring at any stage in the export process, from the planning of the export until the delivery of the animals to their overseas destination.

AAV activities may include:

  • examining, testing or treating the animals
  • monitoring the health and welfare of the animals
  • keeping records of the implementation of the AEP
  • making declarations attesting to the completion of the requirements of the AEP
  • otherwise reporting on the implementation of the AEP.

An AEP must include the activities the exporter requires either a land-based or shipboard AAV to perform and what records the AAVs must keep. The AEP must include how an AAV should demonstrate compliance with their instructions and reference supporting documents.

An AEP may contain different programs of activities for different:

  • importing countries
  • type, kind or classes of livestock to be exported, and
  • methods of transport (export by air or sea).

The Secretary must be satisfied of these things prior to granting an export permit for a consignment.

Narelle Clegg
Assistant Secretary
Live Animal Exports Branch
Exports Division
Department of Agriculture and Water Resources

Contact officer: Jessica Edington
Phone: 02 6272 4581

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Last reviewed: 11 November 2019
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