IGTC at UNCTAD eWeek: Shaping the Future of the Digital Economy

IGTC has made a presentation at a panel session on "Enhancing Trade and Traceability in Agri-Food Supply Chains through SPS Electronic Certification," organized by the International Seed Federation, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), and Standards and Trade Development Facility (STDF).

Grain trade perspectives were brought forward by IGTC’s Innovation Emissary, Craig Fedchock, providing a private sector perspective on revolutionizing agri-food trade and traceability.

Key takeaways from the discussion:

  • Global agro-food trade amounts to a staggering 1.5 trillion USD, with 20% of calories used for consumption being imported. In Africa, the dependence on imports is even more pronounced, emphasizing the critical need for efficient trade systems.
  • The benefits of SPS (Sanitary and Phytosanitary) electronic certification are immense: from eliminating paper losses to reducing clearance times, diminishing fraudulent certificates, and enhancing risk assessment.
  • OECD's research showcases the potential of digitalizing SPS systems and the trade facilitation effects of e-certification.

Traceability emerged as a key focus, highlighting the critical role of the private sector in fostering change through partnerships and communication. However, concerns about cybersecurity and resistance to change remain important considerations for some.

The STDF evaluation of the ePhyto project underscores the value of harmonization and gradual digitalization, emphasizing the active involvement of the private sector as a catalyst for success.

The success stories shared by the Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation (GATF) from Morocco and Nigeria showcased significant savings and benefits post-implementation of e-certificates, further emphasizing the transformative potential of these systems for both public and private sectors.

At IGTC, we remain committed to advancing these discussions and driving tangible change in enhancing agri-food trade. Our ongoing engagement with key stakeholders such as STDF, IPPC, GATF, and others highlight the significance of shared interests in leveraging these systems.

IGTC looks forward to continued collaboration and innovation in this area.