Biosecurity and Trade

Biosecurity is a strategic and integrated approach to analyzing and managing relevant risks to human, animal and plant life and health and associated risks to the environment. Interest in biosecurity has risen considerably over the last decade in parallel with increasing trade in food, plant and animal products, more international travel, new outbreaks of transboundary disease affecting animals, plants and people, heightened awareness of biological diversity and greater attention to the environment and the impact of agriculture on environmental sustainability.

Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTSs) need to position themselves to take advantage of trading opportunities, while protecting their natural resource base from potential risks.
SPC to continue support to Melanesian countries in biosecurity and trade facilitation
Thursday, 12 April 2012 12:29

SPC/LRD Market Access Specialist- Josua Wainiqolo discussing market access issues with VAL GM -Paul Smith. Speaking at a Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) Customs and Quarantine Subcommittee meeting held in Vanuatu recently, Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) Market Access Specialist Josua Wainiqolo made it clear that SPC will continue to provide assistance through its Land Resources Division to Melanesian countries in improving biosecurity issues and increasing trade in agricultural and forestry products.

SPC has assisted MSG members and other Pacific Island countries and territories (PICTs) over the years by providing training on biosecurity issues, assisting them to develop biosecurity regulations and set up and equip biosecurity facilities, and undertaking import risk analyses on commodities.

Mr Wainiqolo said that the MSG Secretariat had proposed to the subcommittee that SPC continue to be the frontline agency for direct support to MSG members on quarantine issues, including bilateral quarantine agreements.

‘The MSG Secretariat and SPC are finalising a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in areas including trade facilitation and biosecurity,’ he said.

He added, ‘With assistance from the Pacific Regional Economic Integration Programme (PACREIP), SPC assisted four MSG member countries to set up biosecurity information facilities with equipment and training.’

SPC will continue to provide technical and scientific advice on import risk analysis for livestock and livestock products to Fiji regarding the import of frozen poultry from Brazil and sheep, goats and dairy cattle from New Zealand.

SPC recently assisted Solomon Islands on import risk analysis for five vegetables from Papua New Guinea and facilitated Fiji’s discussion with Australia and New Zealand biosecurity authorities on fresh taro export conditions.

Similarly, SPC assisted Vanuatu with gaining market access for island cabbage and Polynesian plum, and provided support to Fiji to build inter-island trade between Rotuma and Tuvalu.

A total of 14 customs and quarantine officers from MSG member countries attended the meeting at MSG headquarters in Vanuatu from 7 to 9 March 2012.

Photo caption [Top left] – SPC/LRD Market Access Specialist- Josua Wainiqolo discussing market access issues with Vanuatu Abattoirs Limited GM - Paul Smith.

Photo caption [Bottom right] - Participants of the meeting.

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