Posted on Wed, 29 Mar 2017, 09:32
The ePhyto Steering Group (ESG) and Project Technical Committee (PTC) meeting was held from 13-17 March 2017 at the World Trade Organization (WTO), Geneva, Switzerland. The main objective of the meeting was to advance development of the ePhyto Solution. The meeting was attended by Mr. Craig Fedchock (the IPPC Advisor) and Mr. Shane Sela (the IPPC ePhtoto Project Manager), as well as all relevant ESG and PTC members.
The ESG members reviewed the specifications for hub and generic ePhyto national system (GeNS) with the IPPC s service provider, the United Nations International Computing Centre (UNICC). The ESG finalized the specifications for the hub and the details for the web services description language which allows country systems to connect to the hub. The UNICC will now commence the development of the hub in keeping with the specifications. It is expected that countries with existing national systems which have committed to participating the pilot will be able to begin exchanges of electronic phytosanitary certificates by the third quarter of 2017. Development of the GeNS will follow once evaluation of the ASYCER system which was developed by the United Nations Centre for Trade and Development has been evaluated.
During their meeting, the ESG began to frame the evaluation criteria that will be used to assess ASYCER. The ESG also worked on finalizing the mapping of phytosanitary certificate information to the proposed electronic certificate based upon the standardized structure in ISPM 12. However some of the elements identified in the standardized codes and lists referred to in Appendix 1 of ISPM 12 exceed or in some cases do not fully correspond with the information used by national plant protection organizations (NPPOs). The ESG s finalization of the mapping was critical to finalizing the specifications for GeNS which is reliant on a fully harmonized approach to the elements of the certificate.
The ESG also discussed collaboration with CITES and CODEX as they embark on electronic certification between competent authorities.