DAR-ES-SALAAM -- Tanzania is gearing up to become self-reliant on livestock vaccine production, with the country's veterinary laboratory agency set to manufacture at least 11 such products by 2020 while the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries works on a decree to make livestock vaccination compulsory.

The Tanzania Veterinary Livestock Agency (TVLA) revealed here Monday that so far, five types of the vaccines had been produced locally since 2014 and that the remaining six were at various stages of trials.

Dr Furaha Mramba, the TVLA Chief Executive Officer, said the rabies vaccination was one of those undergoing trials and that full production was expected to commence next year.

Other vaccines on trials are those for Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia (CBPP), Contagious Caprine Pleuropneumonia (CCPP), Foot-and-Mouth Disease, Lumpy Skin Disease and peste des petits ruminants (PPR).

It's cost-saving when the country produces its own vaccines instead of importing them, Dr Mramba said.

She added that the five types of vaccines already on the market are those for anthrax (to prevent a serious bacterial disease of sheep and cattle, typically affecting the skin and lungs); black quarter (to prevent an infectious bacterial disease most commonly caused by Clostridium chauvoei).

Others are vaccines for Brucellosis S-19, TEMEVAC 1-2 and TEMEV AC 1-2, she said at the launch of a campaign against rabies in Moshi district, in Kilimanjaro region. The launch was held at the ministry's head office here. The campaign will be implemented by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in partnership with the government.

The launch went together with the delivery of 33,700 dozes of rabies vaccines worth 103 million shillings (about 45,200 US dollars), a donation from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

The event was officiated by Deputy Minister Abdallah Ulega, who stressed that the ministry would come up with the decree to enforce livestock vaccination.

after introduction of this decree, the livestock keepers who will not vaccine their cattle will risk legal action, Ulega said, stressing that rabies was a major threat across the country, often leading to human deaths.