EU- Russian partnership to reduce bio-threats and fight disease outbreaks

Authors:

  • Roger Roffey

Publish date: 2008-04-08

Report number: FOI-R--2493--SE

Pages: 102

Written in: English

Keywords:

  • biologiska vapen
  • bioterrorism
  • biologisk säkerhet
  • hotreducerande program
  • EU
  • G 8 partnerskapet
  • hälsosäkerhet
  • icke-spridning
  • Ryssland
  • biological weapons
  • biosecurity
  • Cooperative Threat Reduction
  • G 8 Global Partnership
  • health security
  • non-proliferation
  • Russia

Abstract

The aim of this study was to discuss improved partnerships between the EU and Russia as well as with other Eastern European and Central Asian (EECA) countries.For a long time cooperation has been ongoing in several areas as well as to prevent the profileration from the former Soviet biological weapons programme. The threat reduction activities in the biological area need to be widened in scope and measures that could be promoted by the European Union are discussed. Through a more active cooperation with international partners the efficiency and better integration with global networks on disease surveillance and biological preparedness response can be achieved for all involved. Potential centres of excellence for collaboration on crisis management, bio-preparedness, for development of diagnostics, medical countermeasures and biosecurity/biosafety training as well as supporting epidemiological surveillance training could be created. One area of mutual concern with potential for mutual beneficial partnership could be to study how the climate changes anticipated in 5-30 years will influence the infectious disease patterns in the European part of Russia, Ukraine and Belarus as well as in bordering countries of the EU and the risks involved for partners. Encouraging internationary accepted biosafety and biosecurity practices at Russian and other EECA institutes will be essential in promoting Western investments and creating a safety culture that will have multiple benefits. Another area could be joint programs to develop protection and preparedness against bioterrorism. Commercial endeavours in biotechnology could be promoted depending on Russia being able to create a more business friendly enviroment. Russia has much to offer for cooperation but this will not happen without avtive Russian partnership. The report can also be seen as an updating of previous work in this area and can also serve as a background paper on these issues in preparation for the Swedish Presidency of the EU in 2009.

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