Standards Committee takes steps forward to streamline the standard setting process and implement the strategic framework

Posted on Mon, 04 Oct 2021, 07:28

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©FAO/Eduardo Soteras

Rome, 21 September 2021. The Standards Committee (SC) of the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) met virtually on 14 and 15 September to finalize the work on some of the development agenda items of the IPPC Strategic Framework 2020-2030 that relate to standard setting, and to streamline the process when it comes to the development of phytosanitary treatments.

The SC completed the work initiated at the last July meeting, including the preparation of a report by the working group in charge of the review of the list of topics for IPPC standards, which will impact the SC’s work programme. In addition, the SC has progressed on discussions on the IPPC Strategic Framework’s development agenda items concerning commodity and pathway specific standards, developing guidance on the use of third-party entities, and diagnostic laboratory networking. The SC posed several questions and suggestions on how these topics can be implemented, and agreed to submit some proposals to the Commission on Phytosanitary Measures (CPM) Focus Group on the Implementation of the Strategic Framework to contribute to the development of an integrated work plan around these development agenda items.

“Increasing confidence in authorization programmes is one of the priorities when implementing the agenda item on the development of guidance for the use of third party entities to perform phytosanitary actions,” said Steve Cote, SC member from Canada and SC lead for the topic on authorization of entities. In this regard, the SC will also complete the submission form for an Implementation Review and Support System (IRSS) study to review and gather information on the challenges faced when authorizing third-party entities.

To streamline the standard setting process and ensure prompt adoption of phytosanitary treatments, the SC proposed modifications to the standard setting procedure in a way that will allow the committee to recommend phytosanitary treatments for adoption by the CPM right after the first consultation, if no significant technical comments are made by contracting parties. “This simplified process will allow flexibility to develop more phytosanitary treatments, but the decision whether to send for CPM adoption will be made by the Standards Committee after careful consideration of the response provided by the Technical Panel on Phytosanitary Treatments,” said Janka Kiss, international phytosanitary consultant at the IPPC Secretariat.

Several updates that may impact the work of the Standards Committee were presented from the Implementation and Facilitation Unit and Integration and Support Team of the IPPC Secretariat, including a report on the International Year of Plant Health (IYPH). The Committee also reviewed urgent issues related to the Technical Panel for the Glossary and requested the Secretariat to open a call for a Russian speaking expert to join the technial panel. The next SC meeting is scheduled for 3 and 4 September 2021, and will focus on discussions around the submissions to the call for topics and the 2022 SC work programme.

The September SC meeting report will be available at: https://www.ippc.int/en/core-activities/standards-setting/standards-committee/

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