The Awassi Express, the livestock carrier, will depart Napier Port on New Zealand’s North Island on Wednesday night.
The Ministry for Primary Industries has received an export application for 5,300 dairy breeding cattle.
The Ministry gave the go ahead for the cows to be shipped to China and it is expected that the ship’s journey will take 15 days.
The Awassi Express is owned by Saudi businessman Hamood Al-Khalaf.
Highest animal welfare standards
According to Radio New Zealand, the Australian livestock exporting firm Landmark International, which is planning to ship the cows, has said the highest standards of animal welfare will be met.
“This clearly allows the Landmark consignment to utilise additional space requirements as required to ensure the highest possible animal welfare outcome and comfort during the voyage for this high-value dairy consignment,” the company’s statement said.
The ship is capable of taking 16,000 animals but will only carry the 4,500 cows which will be accompanied by three experienced stockmen and a large crew, Landmark International said.