§ Mrs. Browning
[holding answer 15 July 1996]: Yes. The recent isolated case of European bat lyssavirus 2 does not affect our international status as a rabies-free country. The international zoosanitary code of the office international des epizooties—OIE—defines a rabies free country as one in whichno case of indigenously acquired rabies has been confirmed in man or any other species during the past two years; however this status would not be affected by the isolation of European Bat Lyssavirus (EBL1 or EBL2).
Although following the bat rabies case it was not possible to sign official veterinary certification for exports 640W for dogs and cats and some other rabies susceptible animals to some countries, this was because the official certification they required contained health assurances on rabies which, because of their specific wording, could no longer be met. All these countries have now been contacted and trade has resumed with those countries to which we export significant numbers of such animals. We are continuing to press those countries which have so far failed to respond.