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4. Country, regional and international organization reports (Agenda item No. 3)

4.1 Country reports

4.1.1 Australia

Brian Stynes updated member countries on the status of the national plant protection programme in Australia and recent changes in the management of this programme. The national responsibility primarily resides within the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry - Australia (AFFA). Within AFFA, Biosecurity Australia (BA) is responsible for trade-related quarantine issues. The Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS) is responsible for inspection and certification and the office of the Chief Plant Protection Officer (OCPPO) for all other plant health issues of national significance.

Within BA, Plant Biosecurity (PB) is responsible for establishing and reviewing biosecurity policies for plants and plant products and working with AQIS on the implementation of such policies. It is committed to maintaining a high level of expertise in pest risk analyses and it participates actively in international standard-setting fora. The Australian IPPC official contact point resides within PB. The OCPPO provides national consideration of pest incursion management, pest surveillance and contingency planning.

In 2000, Plant Health Australia (PHA) was established as an independent corporation with members drawn from industry and government. PHA is expected to have an increasingly important role in the development of national plant health policy and in the support of national programmes.

As regards the development of international standards for phytosanitary measures (ISPMs), Australia acknowledges and supports the current work programme of the interim commission on phytosanitary measures (ICPM), where eight proposed standards are currently under development and work is commencing on a further six. Importantly, the latter six include:

- Risk analysis for environmental hazards of plant pests;

- Efficiency of phytosanitary measures; and

- Irradiation as a phytosanitary treatment.

Five draft standards recently distributed to FAO members for comment have been circulated to state government agencies and industry to broaden the national consultation process within Australia.

In relation to proposals for regional standards, Australia participated in the APPPC working group on regional standard setting and endorses the proposed work programme and the establishment of a regional Standards Committee emulating the infrastructure of the IPPC standard setting process.

Australia confirmed a range of pest incursions subsequent to the 21st APPPC meeting.

4.1.2 Bangladesh

Bangladesh is a tropical country. The main cultivated area is under rice, wheat, jute, sugarcane and cotton followed by fruits, vegetable and tea plantations. Pests, diseases and weeds affect crop growth, development and yield. Losses, on average, are around 20 percent annually. The major pests include stemborer, ear cutting caterpillar, hispa, uffra disease and tungro virus in rice, foliar blights and seedling rot in wheat; hairy caterpillar, semilooper and virus in jute; red rot and soil cutworm in sugarcane, and bollworm, white flies, aphids, jassids, stemborer in cotton. There are no major pests on tea.

The plant protection department is headed by the Director and has assigned one Assistant Director and four Deputy Directors. The department has four major areas, operation and maintenance, plant quarantine, pest surveillance and forecasting and pesticide administration and quality control.

Until 1996, stemborer and rice hispa were the major pests but from 1997 to the present day brown plant hopper (BPH) Nilaparvata lugens emerged as the major pest in the country. Pest control is primary under the private sector and quality aspects are taken care of by the plant protection department. Foliar sprays are common practice. Seed and soil treatment is a regular phenomenon.

The extension service had been strengthened in light of integrated pest management (IPM). IPM in rice has been in practice for a long time with positive results. In cotton, IPM is a new dimension but there is a bright prospect of it. Recently an FAO/EU project with emphasis on training of the facilitators and farmers field schools was launched in 2001. The project is intended to be completed in 2004.

The national plant quarantine service had been working under the plant protection section and more emphasis had been given to the SPS project funded by DANIDA.

A good number of pesticides has been registered in Bangladesh. Some of the local bio-pesticides are used by farmers. Field staff have been trained on plant protection measures by both local and international trainers and experts.

Bangladesh will also cooperate and collaborate in the development of standards by providing information on survey work within the country and any follow up that can be done with the resource available.

4.1.3 Cambodia

The current strategies of plant protection in Cambodia still cover a narrow spectrum. Pest control is largely dependent on pesticides. However, since 1993 the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) has been emphasizing on the development and practice of IPM as an alternative to indiscriminate use of pesticides particularly in food crops. Accordingly, the FAO IPM developed the farmers field school (FFS) programme for rapid extension of IPM practice. To date about 30 000 farmers have been trained in IPM. This programme has helped the country towards pesticide use reduction. Pesticide management at national level is the responsibility of the Bureau of Agricultural Material Standard (BAMS) which was established in 1999 by the MAFF incorporation with Department of Agronomy and Agricultural Land Improvement. The Cambodian agriculture research and development institute (CARDI) is also cooperating in developing some research activities related to plant protection.

The agricultural productivity improvement project (APIP) of the MAFF in Cambodia has recently drafted a new plant quarantine sub-decree, in line with ASEAN plant quarantine framework, SPS agreement of WTO, and the IPPC.

Besides the FAO-IPM programme, there are some bilateral development support programmes in the field of plant protection e.g. DANIDA, World Bank funded APIP projects. However, the overall plant protection programmes in Cambodia need to be strengthened to develop activities in line with international standards.

4.1.4 China

With the development of the economy, the areas of cash crops and oil crops are increasing sharply and the area of grain crops is decreasing gradually. This has resulted in a great change to field ecosystems. More than 276 million ha. of crop area was infested by pests last year, which was including 206 million ha. of grain crops and 73 million ha of cash crops. Pest occurrence areas of the last year were less than the area of 1999. The pest control area of 2000 was 308 million ha, which was including 217 million ha. of grain crops and 91 million ha. of cash crops. The nation-wide plant protection technical development, actions and the national IPM program including rice, cotton, maize, vegetables and fruits. They are led by the National Agriculture-Technical Extension and Service Center, Ministry of Agriculture (NATESC, MOA) in Beijing which coordinates the IPM activities in the country.

China's plant quarantine consists of three parts, i.e. agricultural plant quarantine, forestry plant quarantine and import and export plant quarantine. The Ministry of Agriculture, the Bureau of Forestry and the State General Administration for Quality Supervision and Inspection and Quarantine (which was organized by former State Administration for Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine and former State Administration for Quality Supervision of the People's Republic of China) are in charge of respective quarantine. The three departments co-operate with each other during their work according to their responsibilities in the laws and regulations. As China will join WTO, the Chinese government has paid great attention to international agreements and standards inspite of the fact that China is still not a member of WTO. New reform measures have been adapted both in domestic and port quarantine systems. China has re-assessed all related quarantine rules, regulations and laws, and cancelled some parts of the rules and regulations. The revision of some rules and regulations are on the way. The transparency of the rules and regulations and policies has been increased. The information exchanges have been strengthened in the execution of the rules and regulations. Up to present, China has completed more than 40 PRA reports on foreign agricultural plants and products entering into China, and more than 20 others are on the way. So far, 10 national rules on agriculture plant quarantine have been issued.

In order to strengthen the international exchange concerning SPS, China has actively taken part in the related international activities organized by the international or regional organizations, such as IPPC, APEC etc. and put forward some constructive suggestions, coordinating the relationships between the plant quarantine and SPS agreement. China has also participated in ASEM on plant quarantine symposium and carried out discussions on standards, transparency and procedures. Furthermore, China has carried out exchanges, discussions and cooperation with related countries, regarding how to implement the SPS agreement. By now China has signed more than 100 bilateral phytosanitary requirements or regulations with more than 40 countries.

China/FAO community IPM in rice (1998 to 2002), China/FAO/EU IPM in cotton (2000-2004), impact assessment on IPM, farmer participatory research on Bt-cotton, IPM in sweet potato, poverty alleviation with IPM, rodent control etc are under implementation by the support from cooperation with FAO, EU and other international organizations. In addition, the bilateral cooperation on IPM projects of China/USA, China/Australia, China/Korea, China/Germany, China/Thailand, China/IRRI, etc have been set up. The exchange of information and experiences in IPM are shared among counterparts through visits and joint research.

China (Hong Kong)

Crop farming in Hong Kong concentrates on growing vegetables, flowers and ornamental plants. The available arable land is primarily used for vegetable production to supply the local market. In 2000, 42 500 tonnes of fresh vegetables were produced and accounted for 6.6 percent of local consumption.

Pest incidence is considerable in vegetable production under the intensive cropping pattern and subtropical climate in Hong Kong. Commonly occurring pests include: fall armyworm (Spodoptera litura), vegetable leaf miner (Liriomyza sativae Blanchard), diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella), Palm thrips (Thrips palmi Kamy), cotton aphid (Aphid gossypii glover), Hawaiian beet webworm (Hymenia recurvalis (Fabricius)) and melonfly (Bactrocera cucurbitae). Fungal diseases, viral diseases and nematodes may also cause damage when farmers do not attend their crops.

In the past few years, 29 pests have been newly identified in the territory but none, at present, causes significant economic damage to crops. Furthermore, regular surveillance of the farming community also resulted in 20 new host records.

The Hong Kong Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department continues to evaluate and field-test various environmentally friendly pest control measures for development of integrated pest management systems to help local farmers combat major vegetable pests. Applicable technical information is disseminated through farm visits, field demonstrations and workshops. Studies have also been initiated to evaluate the development potential and technical requirements for organic farming.

The Plant (Importation and Pest Control) Ordinance regulates the import of plants, plant pests and soil. To facilitate traders in the export of plants, phytosanitary certification services are provided.

Currently, a total of 416 pesticides are registered by the Director of Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation under the Pesticides Ordinance. The government actively encouraged the development and use of alternative measures, including biopesticides, that can reduce the reliance on chemical pesticides in agricultural pest control.

Pesticides Ordinance is being revised to provide for registration by individual pesticide product rather than active ingredient and the control of pest control companies by license. It is intended to implement the new measures in the latter half of 2002.

4.1.5 DPR Korea

During the reporting period the government reorganized the existing system to establish amonolithic plant protection system ranging from the ventral level down to country/city level by setting up new specialized plant protection stations in 200 counties/cities. These stations are directly responsible for technical guidance, training and extension for plant pests and diseases control and operation of biological insecticides production bases.

However, the new plant protection stations in the counties do not operate satisfactorily because of a lack of appropriate material and technical conditions. Every year, DPR Korea suffers from severe droughts between April and June and heavy rainfall in July and August. It is therefore difficult to control plant pests and diseases in a planned way and necessitates the establishment of integrated pest and diseases management systems.

It is emphasized that, in the present country situation and in view of the importance of environment protection, pests and disease management based on cultivation and biological sciences will be given further priority.

4.1.6 Indonesia

The concept of integrated pest management (IPM) is a principle of crop protection in Indonesia. Since 1989 the government has launched a large scale programme to implement this concept. Emphasis of the programme is focussed on human resources development that has successfully brought about tremendous changes in behaviour and field practices of farmers to produce better and environmentally sound agriculture.

Nevertheless, pest infestation is still a major problem for crop production in Indonesia, particularly for food and horticulture crops. It is estimated that pest infestation has caused 11 to 33 percent reduction of rice production per year, whereas on some horticulture crops the figures are even higher. On vegetables, yield losses caused by pest infestation in some areas may range from 46 to100 percent, on citrus 10 to100 percent, and on mango 25 to 60 percent. On the contrary, no significant increase of pest infestation on estate crops was reported during the past two years.

Lack of expertise has prevent the implementation of some ISPMs in Indonesia. Human resource training is needed to enable the implementation of the standards in the future.

A lack of technical data means that the development of biopesticides is behind those categorized as chemical ones. Nevertheless, its application is proceeding and some mass production has been carried out successfully.

4.1.7 Korea, Republic of

The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF) of the Republic of Korea, in order to promote the sustainable environment-friendly agriculture at the government level, encourages farmers actively to use the integrated pest management (IPM) and integrated nutrient management (INM) for their farming according to the Sustainable Agriculture Promotion Act which was established in 1997.

In the plant quarantine sector, the Seoul branch office of the National Plant Quarantine Service (NPQS) was transferred to Incheon international airport office when the international airport was opened in March 2001. Supervision of the violation of plant quarantine regulations was established by endowing the judicial right to plant quarantine officers from the end of July 2001.

The Rural Development Administration (RDA) is monitoring the occurrence of significant pests (46 species) of important economic crops by operating 200 monitoring stations over the country. In the past two years (1999 to 2000), it showed that the acreage of pest occurrence in rice has considerably decreased compared with average year.

In case of the exotic pests - such as Palm thrips (Thrips palmi), Western flower thrips (Frankliniella occidentalis) and American serpentine leaf miner (Liriomyza trifolii) - which are presumed to have been introduced into Korea at the end of 1980s, the occurrence was not serious, but the area of occurrence has steadily increased.

Also, various studies are actively carried out by the Rural Development Administration to make practical use of biological control by using natural enemies or microbial organisms.

Recently, 9 species of arthropods including “aphidophagous gall midge (Aphidoletes aphidimyza) and Amblyseius barkeri etc.” and 4 cultures including “Beauveria bassiana (CS-1)” were selected as promising natural enemies from the survey on natural enemy resources in the country.

4.1.8 Laos

The tropical monsoon climate is conducive to supporting a variety of pests. The most important insect pests of lowland rice are stem borers, gall midge, BPH, rice bug, grasshoppers and worms. There were no pests of significance with upland rice except rodents, grasshoppers and wild animals. Other important pests causing damage in crops are: rats, mice, crabs and snails. Insect pests of other crops have not yet been systematically recorded by the research system. Major rice diseases and their causal agents include bacterial leaf blight, blast, sheath blight, brown spot, bakanae, ragged stunt and others.

Rice is the most important crop, occupying 82 to 84 percent of the total crop area, and is the staple food for the Lao people. Most of the farmers of the country use cultural methods of pest control. The use of resistant varieties is probably the most widely used method against insect pest and diseases.

The use of chemicals in plant protection is of relatively low importance in Lao PDR. The country does not produce any active ingredients, nor does it formulate any pesticides locally. All pesticides are imported. There was a legal framework for the use and trade of pesticides initiated in 1998, and the regulation for the management and usage of plant protection products has been revised twice, in 1998 and 2000.

Biological control is still very weak. The policy of government is geared towards developing IPM systems against pests in order to improve the performance of agricultural crops. Plant protection, especially integrated pest management, is important for supporting the government’s objectives in increased market-oriented agricultural product for commercialisation and national self-sufficiency. It will be developed to insure a sustainable productivity in crop production.

4.1.9 Malaysia

The Malaysian national plant protection encountered no serious outbreaks of pest and diseases especially on rice, oil palm, rubber, cocoa and vegetables due to effective pest surveillance and monitoring system, and implementation of IPM. IPM is the prime approach and strategy for crop protection in Malaysia.

In Malaysia pesticides of broad spectrum action and with long residue effect are being phased out or restricted in usage. More emphasis is being given on the selective use of pesticides which is in harmony with the non-target pests and environment.

Malaysia recognizes the important role of plant health in the trade policy and the need to meet their obligations for science based risk assessment under the WTO/SPS agreement. Malaysia is also involved in some of the international cooperation programmes in the area of plant protection and plant quarantine that will improve its capacity for plant health.

4.1.10 Myanmar

The Plant Protection Division (PPD) plays a vital role on Myanmar’s agricultural-based economy. Myanmar commenced the task of plant protection in 1979 with the technical and financial assistance from FAO/UNDP.

No pest and disease outbreaks have been reported in the past two years. Pest occurrence and crop damage recently in Myanmar is much less than previous years. Among the diseases, bacterial leaf blight of rice (BLB) is the most prevalent in monsoon rice throughout the country. Regarding insect pests, rice stemborer is common in all rice growing areas.

To reduce pesticide use and conserve natural enemies, pest management practices have emphasized the IPM approach. IPM strategy is still on its infancy due to the limited resource available from the government. There is no IPM legislation yet in Myanmar.

The project on male sterile insect techniques (SIT) on diamondback moth (DBM) Plutella xylostella, a serious pest of cabbage was funded by FAO/IAEA from 1993 to 1998. As a continuation of this work, native species of Costesia plutellae (DBM larval parasitoid) has been found to be a promising bio-control agent. The effective release percentage is 50 to 70 percent. The rearing method on various cruciferous crops is still under investigation.

The biological control strategy of Helicoverpa armigera, the most destructive pest on pulses and cotton, using predatory bug Eocanthecona farcellata and parasitic wasp Campoletis chlorideae has been conducted for two years (1999 and 2000). The rearing of these two insects and their release in the field in 2001 is already planned. The percentage of pest incidence and boll damage could be reduced to 50 percent.

Farmers field school training programmes in rice have started in 2000 in two divisions (Bago and Magway) and on State (Mon).

Concerning plant quarantine activities, two more plant quarantine stations, Myawaddy, border to Thailand and Lwegye, bordering with China were opened in 1999 and 2000 in addition to five stations already present. The inspection office at Mandalay international airport was established in 2000.

Present activities include:

- issuance of phytosanitary certificate for the export commodities,

- issuance of import certificates for the plant and plant products,

- carrying out the post entry quarantine studies,

- managing to establish the inspection points in accordance with plant pest quarantine law.

Five hundred and seventy-one pesticides with trade names have been registered with the Pesticide Registration Board until 2001. Of these, 216 are WHO toxicity Class III and 198 are Class II. The pesticide consumption in Myanmar is still very low compared to neighbouring countries. Use of pesticides is much more on pulses, cotton and vegetables rather than on rice.

The botanical insecticide (a.i. azadirachtin) produced from neem tree is now widely used in vegetable growing areas and is more effective on Lepidopterous pests.

4.1.11 Nepal

It is estimated that there is 35% of crop loss because of insect pest action.

The National Plant Protection Organization plays an important role in the overall agriculture programme in the reduction of pre and post production losses. Research activities are undertaken by the Nepal Agriculture Research Council (NARC), an autonomous institution under Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives (MOAC). Plant protection activities like pest control, plant quarantine and pesticide regulation enforcement are handled by the Plant Protection Directorate (PPD) in the Department of Agriculture (DOA) of MOAC. The Plant Quarantine Section under PPD has six land-border check-posts along the Indo-Nepal border and one at the international airport.

Regular outbreaks of major pests and diseases since 1988 include those of Grasshoppers (Hieroglybhus banian) in paddy seed bed and sugarcane, brown plant hopper (Nilaparvata lugens) in paddy field, army worm (Heliothis sp.) in maize field, rice blast (pyricularia oryza) in paddy.

For safe distribution and use of pesticides in the country the Pesticide Act, 1991 and Rules 1993 has been enacted for pesticide registration and the licensing of pesticide traders. This has helped to develop a positive attitude and awareness among the resellers, importers and users about the adverse impacts of pesticides. Also through the introduction of IPM programmes farmers recognised the dangers of pesticide misuse, so they are using disease or pest tolerant varieties and pheromone traps.

As a central body for carrying out plant quarantine activities in Nepal, the Plant Quarantine Section has faced a number of problems including:

Nepal is in the process of becoming a member of WTO. In this regard, Nepal is struggling hard in transferring its subsistence-based agriculture farming system into commercial agricultural system, utilizing its scarce resources and limited trained manpower to fulfil WTO requirement.

4.1.12 New Zealand

The New Zealand Ministries of Agriculture and Forestry have merged into a single Ministry and the MAF Regulatory Authority has been split into MAF Biosecurity Authority and MAF Food Assurance Authority. The Biosecurity Act 1993 is the principal legislation relating to the exclusion, eradication and management of pests and unwanted organisms in New Zealand. Further changes to the Act are currently being drafted including the inclusion of forestry products under the Biosecurity Act.

Import health standards are developed on a country:commodity basis. They specify the conditions for importation and movement of risk goods into New Zealand. New Zealand basis its phytosanitary measures and standards on the International Standards of Phytosanitary Measures (ISPMs).

The following new records of pests and diseases were officially responded to by MAF between March 1998 and March 2001;

Ninety-two (92) organisms associated with plants were recorded as new to New Zealand by MAF (March 1998 - March 2001)

MAF is responsible for maintaining quarantine barriers at ports, airports and the international mail centre. The MAF Biosecurity Authority Border Management Group develops policy and sets standards for clearance and the service is delivered by the MAF Quarantine Service. Passenger and crew arrivals at airports have increased by 26 percent to 3.37 million. Additional x-ray machines have been installed to ensure that 100 percent of arriving passengers baggage is searched. There are 11 detector dog teams operating at airports and cruise ships as required. X-ray machines have also been installed at the international mail centre. The random rate for inspection of sea containers was increased from 5 percent to 10 percent during 2000 which led to 20 000 containers out of 380 000 being inspected.

Export certification is provided by MAF through export operations standards that enable export consignments to be certified through both end-point consignment inspection and audited industry operated programmes.

4.1.13 Pakistan

Pakistan has hot and dry climate with around 20 million hectares under field crops, orchards, groves and plantations. Production marketing and trade are traditional. Insect pests, diseases and weeds are the major constraint causing, on an average, losses of around 20 percent annually. The major insect pests include bollworms, white flies, aphids and jassids, cutworm, stem borers, codling moth, and fruit flies. The major diseases include rusts, foliar spots, root and crown rots, leaf curl and bunchy top viruses, powdery mildew, and malformation etc. Wild oats and Phalaris are the main weeds. Moreover, pests in stores, yards and on trade commodities are encountered. The plant protection methods are regulatory, cultural, mechanical and chemical. The biological and genetic control methods although being used, remain to be exploited. IPM in cotton and rice has given good results and is being expanded to cover more crops and areas. Sanitation of field stores conveyances and ships is ensured to check pest spread and to keep produce safe and healthy. The locust situation is calm and the forecast is the same in the coming months. Subsidies on inputs have been withdrawn; support prices have become infrequent. With the exception of few acres of aerial spraying over orchards in Baluchistan, all plant protection operations are carried out by private sector.

By and large agriculture provides a major share of GDP and is a big foreign exchange source. The trade is in private sector. However, the Commerce Ministry formulates the trade policies. The international harmonized commodity description and coding system are being adopted. We are a net importing country and Pakistan’s trade has been influenced by SPS measures of the developed countries. The procedural formalities like pest risk analysis and delayed consultations hamper exports, and stringent conditions make the trade difficult. The ultimate loser is the grower. Efforts are being made to overcome the obstacles to trade.

The pest infestation picture is the same as in previous years and usual control operations continue to be taken. In the last two years a tree decline disease has affected mango plants in Shujabad area (Punjab) this season. About 2 000 hectares are under the affected trees. Cotton leaf curl virus incited by a gemini virus and vectored by white flies has been reported in southern Punjab and northern Sindh. The disease is being managed through crop resistance, sanitation, and plant invigoration and vector control.

Pesticides are registered under the Agricultural Pesticide Ordinance 1971 read with the Agricultural Pesticides (Amendment) Act 1992 and 1997. The legislation regulates imports, manufacture, formulation, sale, use and advertisement of pesticides. No pesticide identified by the Rotterdam Convention and Stockholm Convention is registered in Pakistan and hence cannot be used. So far 1 441 brands of pesticides, and 1 004 products under generic name are registered. Twenty-three pesticides have been de-registered. A strict watch on quality is maintained and judicious use of pesticides is encouraged.

Pesticide consumption has risen by 40 percent since 1987, yet the rapid increase in pesticide use has not solved pest problems and incomes of small cotton growers have fallen as they are spending more and more on pesticides.

Despite the fact that IPM practice started in the country long ago, it has gained a real momentum only during the last decade through national and international co-operation. IPM has been institutionalized moving from a project approach to a viable and sustainable national IPM programme in the country in 2001.

4.1.14 Papua New Guinea

The National Agriculture Quarantine and Inspection Authority (NAQIA) in Papua New Guinea is the Authority oversees the activities in plant protection and quarantine. It has been mandated to basically maintain the regulatory functions in plant protection and quarantine, and to facilitate trade. The Authority will ensure systems and programmes are developed that maintain export quality assurance and to ensure safe imports so as to protect PNG’s agricultural industries, its rich natural biodiversity, and general well being of the people.

In order to sustain its programmes, the Authority is empowered it to apply “User Pay Policy”. The policy allows it to charge on a cost recovery basis for services rendered to the public and stakeholders.

The role of the National Agriculture Research Institute (NARI) is to develop and maintain research into plant protection under production. In cases of pest incursions and outbreaks, both organizations are required to collaborate to control and/or eradicate the pest involved.

Pest control and extension is the responsibility of all agriculture institutes and to lesser extend the provincial department of primary industry. The technical specialists and extension specialist staff carry out most pest control and extension in the country. The lead agencies are expected to develop control strategies against exotic pest outbreaks and even endemic pest if spread has reached unmanageable level, and to develop public awareness programmes.

The regulatory and use of pesticide is governed by three pieces of legislation under the office of Environment and Conservation, the Environmental Contaminants Act 1972, the Environmental Planning Act 1978 and Water Resources Act 1982. Also the new Environmental Act 2000 strengthens the regulation and management of pesticides in Papua New Guinea. The biopesticide in contrast, is regulated by the NAQIA Act 2000 under NAQIA and the Fauna and Flora Act under OEC. Their importation and use are strictly regulated.

NAQIA has in the last two years supported eight international collaborative programmes in plant protection and quarantine in the country. This indicates the level of interest and knowledge the Authority wished to attain. It has already realized the dual benefits in supporting international programmes and will pursue this course in the future.

However, there are international programmes that NAQIA still supports, particularly international standards although it finds them difficult to implement. The technical capacity and use of lawyers’ jargon English in setting international standards disadvantage countries that lack human capacity and English as second language. It is suggested that the text for all standards be re-written into plain and simple English.

4.1.15 Sri Lanka

New plant protection act

The emphasis on globalization and the need to maintain competitiveness necessitated the review of the Plant Protection Act No. 10 of 1924. Thus, the new Plant Protection Act No. 35 of 1999 was gazetted at the end of 1999. It includes sections for the declaration of quarantine pests and for making appeals, etc. The regulations of the old act prevail until new regulations are gazetted in the very near future.

Pest outbreaks and control programmes

The country has embarked on several plant protection programmes for control of specific pests. Control programmes of new weed species, Parthenium hysterophorus and Alternaria philoxerodies, and insects. Lyriomyza huidobrensis and the African Cassava Mosaic Virus were prominent. An outbreak of rice root knot nematode, Meloidogyne graminicola on 3 000 hectares was noted and is being controlled. In June 2001, rice mite, Steneotarsonemus spinki reappeared in one district and was effectively controlled. An outbreak of Xanthomonas campestris pv dieffenbachiae in anthurium is also being controlled.

One trial field planted with hybrid rice from China was found infected with Tilletia barclayana and had to be destroyed.

IPM in rice and other crops

IPM has received high priority in the country. Despite war problems in the country and shortage of financial resources in the government sector, rice IPM strategies were successfully implemented with support from donors and NGO’s. IPM has now been extended to vegetables and plantation crops. Researchers are actively pursuing studies for recommendations for IPM packages for several crop-pest interactions.

Pesticide control

With regard to pesticide control, the government has given this the highest priority. Twenty two highly hazardous chemicals were phased out by 1998. Import data for pesticides indicate a downward trend, attributable to the IPM programmes. However, sophisticated pesticide analysis facilities need to be established to provide technical support to the pesticide control legislation.

4.1.16 Thailand

Agriculture continues to play an important role in Thailand. Rice is by far the most economically important crop and in 1999 generated the total farm value closed to US$ 3 000 million. One of the serious problems in crop production over the past 2 years is pest infestation. Last year, there was an outbreak of sugarcane stem borers in Thailand especially in the north-eastern region of the country. The outbreak of white tip disease of sugarcane was also reported in north-eastern part of Thailand.

At present, Thailand is aiming at the reduction on the use of agricultural chemicals and a number of initiatives have been undertaken since 1992. IPM packages have been successfully developed for 11 crops.

In 1992, the government of Thailand enacted the Hazardous Substance Act B.E. 2535 (1992) to control all hazardous substances. The use of biopesticides is becoming more popular in particular for pre-harvest application against insect pests. This is evidenced by the increasing import volume of bacteria isolates during 1992 to1994, reaching the volume of 100 tons.

4.1.17 Tonga

The delegate from Tonga presented a report from his region as the Chairperson of the PPPO. The summary is included in Section 4.2.2

4.1.18 Viet Nam

In the past two years, the agriculture production and plant protection activities in Viet Nam have achieved a great success contributing to the improvement quality of life of farmers, assuring the food security program and playing important role in the international trade of agriculture products.

The plant protection infrastructure and communication systems were improved and modernised. The dissemination of information on plant protection to farmers was improved and this information served to assist their decision making for pest control.

Farmer’s education and training programmes were the main activities carried out during 1999-2000. The IPM programme concentrated on farmers training and community IPM. Farmer’s training on IPM in other crops like: cotton, vegetables, tea, soybean, fruit trees also received great supports and actively contributed to rural poverty alleviation. The IPM programme is still supported by international organizations and the government of Viet Nam.

New incidences of pests with high damage potential recorded in Viet Nam during 1999 to 2001 were: coconut beetle (Brontispa sp.), sugarcane white grub (Alissotum impessicolla), hispa on maize (Dicladispa armigera). Records of plant quarantine pests with a high risk of establishment and spreading were: burrowing nematode (Radopholus similis) and powdery scab on potato (Spongospora subterrana).

The plant quarantine network in Viet Nam has been improved substantially in recent years. The revision of the Decree of plant protection and quarantine was approved recently by the executive committee of parliament. This is in line with IPPC and will facilitate harmonization with the SPS Agreement.

Pesticide registration and management’s regulations have been reviewed and amended. Up to January 2001, more than 300 active ingredients with 844 trade names of pesticides have been registered for use. Twenty-seven active ingredients with 46 trade names of pesticides are restricted in use and 26 active ingredients are banned for use in Viet Nam. Bio-pesticides have also been developed and used in Viet Nam e.g. Metarhizium anisopliae,Bt, NPV, botanical pesticides, biorats.

4.2 Observers

4.2.1 Japan

Japan is one of the major importing countries of agricultural products in the world. As a number of imports of plants and plant products gradually increase, Japan has some concerns about introduction of new alien pests.

Under these circumstances, Japanese plant quarantine authorities have implemented appropriate phytosanitary measures at the entry points and have improved plant quarantine systems in order to prevent the introduction of new alien pests taking into account the consistency with the WTO-SPS Agreement and relevant international standards on phytosanitary measures.

On the other hand, many countries have been requesting Japan to lift the import prohibition on their agricultural products. Japan will lift the prohibition as soon as possible if the proposed phytosanitary measures secure the protection level equivalent to prohibition, upon evaluation from a technical and scientific viewpoint.

4.2.2 The Pacific Plant Protection Organization (PPPO)

(i) Pacific Plant Protection Organization (PPPO)

The PPPO is the RPPO established by Pacific island countries and territories. Activities are implemented by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC)

(ii) Member countries:

There are twenty four (24) PPPO members, including American Samoa, Australia, Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), Fiji, French Polynesia, Guam, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Niue, Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), Palau, Papua New Guinea (PNG), Pitcairn Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu and Wallis, and Futuna.

(iii) PPPO Meetings

Member countries meet every three years. The executive committee comprising Australia, New Zealand and 2 elected representatives each from Micronesia, Melanesia and Polynesia sub-regions meet annually. Meetings discuss trade and quarantine issues, recommend actions for implementation by SPC and/or by country representatives.

(iv) PPPO activities include:

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