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2. Development of APPPC Plant Protection Profiles

2.1 Development of draft Plant Protection Profiles format

Based on the guidelines for the 2005 country reports and the responses given, a format was developed to present as much information as possible in tables and lists. Since key legislation, rules and regulations are not expected to change significantly between APPPC meetings, this information could remain unchanged and would only needed to be amended as necessary, thus eliminating the reporting of information that was already previously given. Other information could be simply updated by replacing the figures given with the latest available data. In this manner, gaps in the information could be easily identified and corrected in subsequent revisions. For the section on Pesticide Management, the format accommodated the responses to a questionnaire that was distributed in 2005 for the “Asia Regional Workshop on the Implementation, Monitoring and Observance of the International Code of Conduct on the Distribution and Use of Pesticides”8.

The format of the draft Plant Protection Profiles (PPProfiles) followed the following outline:

1. General Information
- Selected country development indicators
- Organization chart of all plant protection functions
- Contact addresses of plant protection operational units and official contact point for international conventions
2. Plant Quarantine
General information
- List of key legislation/regulation/rules
- Key policy indicators
- Distribution of responsibilities
- Resources (personnel, diagnostic capabilities, other)
- Pest-free area management
•  Key Situation Indicators
- Volume of international trade with plant products
- Technical assistance given/received
Key Operation Indicators
- Institutional statistics (no. of certificates, etc.)
- Information on List of Regulated Pests
- Information on Pest Risk Analysis (PRA)
- Information on Implementation of ISPM
- Progress and constraints in recent years
3. Outbreak Management
(surveillance, pest outbreaks and invasive species)
General information
- Key policy indicators
- Distribution of responsibilities (field pests, migratory pests, exotic pests)
- Resources (personnel, other)
Key Situation and Operation Indicators
- Information on new exotic species found established
- Eradication or internal quarantine actions taken
- Information on pest outbreak control actions
- Progress and constraints in recent years
4. Pest Management
General information
- Key policy indicators
- Distribution of responsibilities (research, recommendations, extension, training)
- Resources (personnel, laboratories, other)
Key Situation and Operation Indicators
- Implementation of IPM
- Market shares of pest control agents
- Information on crops requiring most interventions
- Technical assistance given/received
- Information on pest management extension
- Progress and constraints in recent years
5. Pesticide Management
General information
- List of key legislation/regulation/rules
- Key policy indicators (international conventions, registration, subsidies)
- Distribution of responsibilities, other stakeholders
- Resources (personnel, laboratories, other)
Key Situation Indicators
- Information on pesticide trade
- Pesticide use profile
- Testing, quality control and effects in the field
- Health and environmental information
- Pesticide disposal information
Key Operation Indicators
- Information on registration of pesticides and other control agents
- Information on licensing
- Information on quality control
- Information on food and environmental residue monitoring
- Progress and constraints in recent years

The draft PPProfiles were then sent to a number of countries that were invited for a regional consultation. In preparation for the meeting, the participants were requested to review the profiles and fill in missing information. This actual use of the PPProfiles would help identify ambiguous questions, difficult to get or irrelevant requests.

2.2 Regional consultations

A “Pilot Consultation on Development of Profiles for the Exchange of Plant Protection Information among APPPC Members” was organized by the FAO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific and took place in Bangkok, Thailand, from 12-13 December 2006. It was attended by eight delegates from Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Viet Nam, and three participants from Thailand.

In his opening speech, Mr He Changchui, FAO Assistant Director-General and Regional Representative for Asia and the Pacific, welcomed the participants and noted the timeliness and importance of developing country profiles for plant protection information. This endeavor would not only fill an important information gap, but could also strengthen regional cooperation and development. In today’s globalized world there is an increasing need for accurate and structured information to facilitate trade and to harmonize regulations. FAO is committed to support APPPC in its effort to promote sustainable agricultural development in the Asia-Pacific region, and the exchange of information though structured county profiles is an important element of this strategy.

Before the start of the technical discussions, the participants expressed their expectations and objectives of the meeting as follows:

In the introductory presentation, Mr Walter-Echols presented the results of an analysis of the 2005 country reports that showed the need for improving the mechanisms of information exchange within APPPC. It is expected that an organized and structured information exchange in form of country profiles would help member countries in formulating policies, recognize dangerous trends or gaps in the execution of plant protection functions, and promote transparency and harmonization of procedures. Furthermore, plant protection profiles may reduce the need for frequent questionnaires and would assist in the writing of reports, including required reporting to regional and international organizations. He then explained in more detail the format of the proposed country profiles and how they could be used in the future.

The technical discussions and deliberations of the participants proceeded in sessions covering general information and the four basic plant protection functions as outlined in the draft Plant Protection Profiles (PPProfiles):

I. General information

This section contains basic country development indicators, an organization chart for all plant protection functions and a compilation of the most important addresses for both official and operational contacts.

The organization chart should identify the organizational position of all institutions mentioned in the PPProfiles. This would allow for an easy recognition of the extent of centralization or decentralization and the number of ministries involved. The participants agreed to the basic structure and color coding which should also include different textures for non-color presentations.

During the discussions about which addresses would be useful to have for each country, it was decided to provide the official contact addresses for the responsible ministry and responsible department, and an address for nominations. However, the participants considered it most useful to have operational contact addresses for the different plant protection function areas, in addition to the list of official focal points. The focal point for the Montreal Protocol was added, and other focal points may be added in the future as needed.

The table with selected country development indicators was moved to the end of the section and now also include a list of the most important crops grown in the respective country.

II. Plant quarantine

Most discussions centered on this section since it is the main focus of IPPC. It was decided to eliminate the “Don’t Know” column in all tables with yes or no answers; if additional information is required to explain a response, it should be added as a note under the question. New questions were included in order to split questions that were too comprehensive, such as whether legislation covers domestic, import and export quarantine (now three questions), or the number of import permits/inspections (now two questions). The term “quarantine officer” was defined as the legally authorized persons to inspect and certify shipments. To assess the in-country diagnostic capacity, all accredited facilities capable of identifying the different pest categories should be listed.

With regard to pest-free areas, it was decided to list separately their compliance with ISPM 4 and ISPM 10. To show the importance of agricultural trade, the quantity of the main import and export plant commodities should be provided. A new table was added to the PPProfile to list the main quarantine pests intercepted in the top three commodities. Of particular interest is the list of regulated pests which should be posted on IPP in its entirety while the PPProfiles would contain their summary in form of total number of insects, pathogens and plant species on that list. A link to the complete list should be provided.

The table on the implementation status of ISPMs was left unchanged. It was decided not to add RSPMs to the list because their status is still voluntary.

Discussions and deliberations continued on the second day with the following topics:

III. Surveillance, pest outbreaks and invasive species management

The major change in this section was to report the number of assigned staff separately for surveillance and control functions. The definition of pest outbreaks was to include storage pests, too. Since expenditures for outbreak control may involve both government and private efforts, it was decided to report for the eradication of pests the total area treated by all means, and for the control of regularly occurring pest outbreaks only the government efforts and expenditures.

IV. Pest management

In this section, most clarifications were needed for the infrastructure reporting since in many countries pest management extension is carried out by the general extension service and not the plant protection service. The profile now includes the number of technical plant protection officers, the number of offices on central, state or provincial level, and the number of field offices on district or village level. In addition, information on the number of government biocontrol or biopesticide production and distribution facilities is requested.

V. Pesticide management

This section follows largely the format of reporting which countries will be expected to submit to FAO under the Code of Conduct. The question regarding the licensing of applicators was limited to field crop applications, excluding commercial quarantine treatment facilities. Another area of discussion was the reporting of biopesticides as compared to chemical pesticides. The Pesticide Use Profile now includes categories for chemical pesticides, i.e. insecticides, fungicides, herbicides and others (molluscicide, acaricides, etc.) and for “non-synthetic chemical” pesticides such as Bt, neem and also products such as Avermectin. To monitor progress with the various international pesticide conventions, two tables were added to report the pesticides that were restricted and those that were banned in recent years.

VI. Additional issues

A new section was added to the PPProfiles where other issues of common concern could be reported. This section now includes a table for reporting the genetically modified crops and total area under cultivation in the respective countries.

In conclusion of the meeting, the participants formulated the following observations and recommendations:

It was decided that the draft PPProfiles of the participating countries would be modified and formatted within a week after the consultation to include the changes that were discussed and decided during the meeting. The respective countries would then review and update the profiles, and return them to FAO RAP before the end of 2006. The updated PPProfiles would be included as examples in the forthcoming publication of the meeting.

2.3 Update of Country Plant Protection Profiles

Following the regional consultations, the draft PPProfiles were revised according to the new format and sent to the participating countries for review and completion of missing information. The revised drafts were also sent to a number of non-participating countries which submitted a 2005 country report. The updated PPProfiles that were returned to the APPPC Secretariat were edited for consistency and are presented in the next chapter.

8 Proceedings of the workshop were published as RAP Publication 2005/29.

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