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IGTC Newsletter 14 September 2018

IGTC Beijing General Assembly November 2018: Registrations are open for the IGTC’s General Assembly from 27-29 November in Beijing, China. The China National Association of the Grains Sector (CNAGS) will be our kind hosts at this event. Contact the IGTC Secretariat for further information: secretariat@igtcglobal.org   


September 27-28: Global Low-Level Initiative (GLI) 6th meeting, Natal, Brazil

Practical solutions to LLP will be discussed among GLI governments. Industry will attend a portion of the event, with the grain trade represented by Canada Grains Council (CGC), the Associação Nacional dos Exportadores de Cereais (ANEC), and IGTC.

October 2-4: World Trade Organization 2018 Public Forum, Geneva, Switzerland

This annual event will focus on technology and its transformative impact on lives and economies. The IGTC will participate in a panel on 2 October with OECD, WTO and World Bank, entitled “The future of sustainable agriculture and trade: Directions, policies and investment priorities”. More information here.

October 3-5: IPPC Focus Group on the Commodity and Pathway Standards

A select group of governments will meet to forge solutions for the IPPC on phytosanitary commodity standard setting. More information here.


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IGTC in Action

Grain trade provides expertise at IPPC Latin America ePhyto workshop

The IPPC’s regional workshop on ePhytos for Latin America and the Caribbean was held this week (11-13 September) in Buenos Aires. The aim of the workshop was to raise awareness about the global ePhyto initiative among 19 National Plant Protection Organizations (NPPOs), and to drive implementation of ePhytos in the region.  

The grain trade was identified as a source of industry expertise for this meeting and consequently three IGTC members/Corporate Stakeholders were invited to make presentations:

The event was led by the Argentine NPPO, SENASA, and other speakers included IPPC, the UN Computing Centre, and the ePhyto Steering Group. 

Photo: Maria Marta Rebizo, CIARA-CEC

Government readiness to exchange ePhytos – industry case studies

A total of 18 governments have now officially signed up to the IPPC’s ePhyto Hub, showing a commitment to exchange and receive ePhytos via the global system (see live dashboard here). Mexico, Australia and New Zealand are expected to join Argentina and USA in the full “production stage” in the coming weeks, with Ecuador and Chile not far behind.

The IGTC is working via its regional focal points to ensure that grain trade company testing of ePhyto exchange can be carried out. The aim of the industry case studies is to identify any bottlenecks in the system that could impact trade, as well as contributing to a system that has full interoperability with trade flows.

Cartagena Biosafety Protocol: Preparations for COP-MOP 9 in Egypt

On 17-29 November 2018 the United Nations will call on decision makers from more than 190 countries to “step up efforts to halt the biodiversity loss and protect the ecosystems that support food and water security and health for billions of people”. Part of this effort is for governments to discuss potential revisions to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), and one of its key instruments the Cartagena Biosafety Protocol (CBP), which impacts more than 85% of the world’s grain trade movements.

So far preparatory documentation has been published on socioeconomic considerations, and recommendations from the Compliance Committee (see CBP documents, here), as well as on risk assessment and “synthetic biology (see CBD documents, here).

In addition, on Tuesday this week a webinar was held to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the entry into force of the CBP. Presentations were given by regulatory bodies in Cambodia (risk assessment), South Africa (public understanding of biotechnology), Tunisia (control and risk of “GMOs”), and the EU (importance of the precautionary principle). Presentations can be found here.

The accuracy of the information reported and interpreted in this communication is not guaranteed. All contents are subject to correction and revision. This newsletter and referenced links are for the use of IGTC Members and Stakeholders only and should otherwise be treated as confidential.

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