A fruitful high-level encounter between Nicaragua’s officials and the IPPC Secretariat

Posted on Tue, 18 Feb 2020, 18:13

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The Nicaraguan delegation meets with the IPPC Secretary @FAO

Rome, 13 February 2020 – The IPPC Secretary, Mr Jingyuan Xia, welcomed a delegation from Nicaragua composed of the Minister of Agriculture, H. E. Edward Centeno Gadea, the Ambassador of Nicaragua in Italy, Ms Monica Rebello Roffioni, and the Alternate Representative, Mr Junior Escobar Fonseca. The IPPC delegation was composed Mr Brent Larson, the Implementation Facilitation Unit Lead, and Ms Sarah Brunel, the Deputy Lead of the Implementation Facilitation Unit. The meeting discussed key initiatives and issues of common interest to strengthen the relationship between Nicaragua and the IPPC community.

On behalf of the IPPC community and IPPC Secretariat, Mr Xia thanked the Nicaraguan delegation for their strong supports promoting the International Year of Plant Health (IYPH) 2020. In particular, the crucial attendance of the Minister Centeno to the IYPH launch event opening session on 2nd December 2019 was recognized and highly appreciated by the IPPC Secretary. During the meeting, Mr Xia remarked the importance of the IYPH to raise awareness of plant health among politicians and decision makers, but also the public. For the IPPC Secretary, leaving a strong IYPH legacy is also of paramount importance for younger generations who will stand for plant health in the future.

The authorities of Nicaragua assured their participation in the Ministerial Segment of the Fifteenth Session of the Commission on Phytosanitary Measures (CPM-15), and underlined the importance of focusing on the prevention of plant pests and diseases. The exceptional work Nicaragua and the Central American region are doing on the IPPC Pest Outbreaks Alert and Response Systems, with Fusarium wilt TR4 (Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense Tropical Race 4) as a pilot case for this programme, was acknowledged by the IPPC Secretary. It was felt that the global plant health community will benefit from Nicaragua’s expertise in supporting the implementation of the IPPC Strategic Framework 2020-2030.

Mr Edward Centeno thanked the IPPC Secretary for the fruitful encounter and the general support the IPPC Secretariat is giving to the country, reiterating the commitment of Nicaragua to produce pest-free plants and plant products to alleviate poverty in the country and reach the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The Nicaraguan Minister of Agriculture acknowledged the new phytosanitary law that the country is in the process of passing as a result of recent Phytosanitary Capacity Evaluation output. In addition, the efforts to prevent the introduction and spread of pests, and develop the capacities of the Instituto de Protección y Sanidad Agropecuaria (IPSA), along with their existing efficient pest outbreak alert and response system, were considered as great national assets by the Nicaraguan delegation. The experience gained by Nicaragua will be beneficial for the whole world, expressed Mr Centeno. The country is indeed willing to share its knowledge, in particular through South-South Cooperation to help manage pests, such as Fall Armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda).

The Nicaraguan delegation confirmed that much attention will be paid to the promotion of plant health and the International Year of Plant Health during the FAO Regional Conference that will be held in Nicaragua from 27 to 29 April 2020. The Minister and the Ambassador stated that particular focus will be given during the event on the threat that Fusarium wilt TR4 represents for the world and the need to strengthen global alert and response systems for this particular pest.

Additional photos are available at the following link: https://www.flickr.com/photos/182442121@N04/albums/72157713092993212

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