A STATE government strategy to defend against pests, diseases and weeds in WA was launched in the Swan Valley on Monday.
Agriculture and Food Minister Mark Lewis said the State Biosecurity Strategy 2016-25 provided a framework to manage biosecurity issues, including plant and animal pests, diseases and weeds and diseases that could be transmitted between animals and humans.
He said the strategy would improve co-ordination between government, industry and the community to minimise biosecurity risks within and beyond the WA border.
"While our remote location is a powerful defence against many of the world's worst pests and diseases, increasing globalisation and a changing climate has heightened these risks," Mr Lewis said.
"Biosecurity is a shared responsibility and it is important that all stakeholders have a clear understanding of their role and confidence in a robust decision-making process, backed by strong policies and processes.
"The State's enviable biosecurity reputation is invaluable to securing market access and our tough and sophisticated protocols are regarded as among the best in the world.
"This strategy will reinforce our international standing and pave the way for new export opportunities that will help to grow the agriculture and food sector, and the State economy."
WA's agrifood, fibre and fisheries are highly export orientated, accounting for a combined $7.8 billion in exports in 2014-15 with agricultural product exports at 78 per cent of production value in 2014-15.
The WA Biosecurity Strategy has been developed as part of the $20 million Boosting Biosecurity Defences project under the $350 million Royalties for Regions Seizing the Opportunity Agriculture initiative.
Regional Development Minister Terry Redman said the strategy spanned land and marine environments from the Kimberley to the South Coast and would support the preservation of those assets for future generations to enjoy.
"Strong and innovative biosecurity defences are crucial to the future of WA agriculture and the strength of our regional economy," Mr Redman said.
The strategy will be reviewed within three years.
p More information: go to www.agric.wa.gov.au and search for State biosecurity strategy.