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Development of national action plan for the implementation of the Rotterdam Convention: Pakistan

Introduction

The Ministry of Environment, Government of Pakistan is striving for environmental protection and pollution control in Pakistan. Safe use of chemicals and environmentally sound management of hazardous chemical wastes are the corner stone of the National Environmental Policy.

The International Cooperation (IC) Wing of the Ministry of Environment deals with the issues related to safe management of hazardous chemicals and wastes under various agreements such as the Basel Convention, the Stockholm Convention, the Rotterdam Convention, the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM), the Montreal Protocol and the Kyoto Protocol.

The IC Wing arranges for several activities, aimed at enhancing capacity within the country to tackle the newly arising issues related to wise use of certain hazardous chemicals and safe disposal of harmful wastes.

Some chemicals and their by-products need careful evaluation before being released to the environment, while the use of certain other chemicals need to be banned or restricted in order to avoid environmental degradation and to combat rising levels of pollution.

The Joint Secretary, IC Wing, is the Designated National Authority (DNA) for the Rotterdam Convention. The DNA is striving for implementation of PIC procedure in the country. A participatory decision-making process has been adopted. In order to obtain active participation of stakeholders, the IC Wing occasionally organizes stakeholders dialogue and consultations.

One such national consultation workshop on the development of national action plan for the implementation the Rotterdam Convention was held in Islamabad from 26 to 29 June 2007 in collaboration with the Rotterdam Convention Secretariat and FAO for national capacity building. The consultation involved a wide range of stakeholders from the government, the civil society, the private sector, industrial and research organizations as well as professionals from the academia. The objective was to actively pursue the agenda of safer use and trade in the chemicals which could be otherwise harmful to human health and the environment.

The enhancement in capability of the concerned government officials and other stakeholders, will lead us towards development of a national action plan for the implementation of the Rotterdam Convention on certain hazardous chemicals.

The Ministry of Environment is actively pursuing creation of a strong technical cadre within the Ministry to cater for the future needs in respect of timely and effective decision making regarding various environmental issues and the international obligations. A National Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) Secretariat has been established in the Ministry. The Secretariat will give inputs to the Ministry on various technical issues.

The national consultative workshop on the development of national action plan for the implementation of the Rotterdam Convention, from 26-29 June, 2007, is very productive. The deliberations of the delegates will go a long way towards developing mechanisms for safe management of chemicals and wastes in Pakistan.

The opinions solicited from the technical experts and the valuable suggestions put forth by the learned participants will be reflected in the future strategies and plans devised in light of requirements/obligations under the Rotterdam Convention.

Brief background

Pakistan signed the Rotterdam Convention in September 1999 and ratified it on 14th July 2005.

In recent years, the Government of Pakistan has made significant efforts to establish and improve the national infrastructure for the management of chemicals. The Rotterdam Convention should assist the Government to further improve national infrastructure in chemicals and pesticides management.

The Government of Pakistan has two Designated National Authorities (DNAs). The Ministry of Environment (MoE) deals with industrial chemicals (under the RC) while the Plant Protection Department of the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock (MINFAL) deals with pesticides.

Purpose of the meeting

With the technical assistance of the Secretariat of the Rotterdam Convention and in cooperation with the Regional office of the FAO for Asia and Pacific and UNEP, a national consultation to support development of national action plan for the implementation of the Rotterdam Convention was held in Islamabad from 26-29 June, 2007.

The overall objective of this consultation was to facilitate a national dialogue involving relevant stakeholders on the Rotterdam Convention to review the current status of implementation and to identify the guidelines to develop a national action plan for the implementation of the Convention in Pakistan.

The consultation gave an opportunity to:

Pakistan has actively participated in FAO programmes on IPM and pesticides management. Given the fact that all these programmes are dealing with chemicals and pesticides management, it would be helpful to involve the lead agencies responsible for these ongoing relevant activities. The forum provided an opportunity to exchange experiences and identify possibility for collaboration.

Participants from various ministries, public and private sector organizations (Appendix I) deliberated on issues and challenges; provided valuable inputs, suggestions and recommendations for practicable and possible solutions; and thus helped in setting the stage for further inter-ministerial and institutional cooperation to ensure follow-up of the meeting.

Implementation of the Rotterdam Convention

(a) Current status

Twenty eight pesticides subject to the PIC procedure under the RC have already been banned in Pakistan. The import response from Pakistan for 26 pesticides has been communicated to the RC Secretariat. However, the import responses of methyl parathion and heptachlor need to be worked out.

Pakistan has not provided the RC Secretariat any export/import response on any of the industrial chemicals. However, Poly Chlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) have been banned and included in the List of Banned Items of the Government of Pakistan Trade Policy 2006. There is a need to inform the RC Secretariat of the banning of PCBs in Pakistan and to work out a strategy to deal with the remaining ten industrial chemicals in accordance with national priorities set in consultation with all the stakeholders.

The MINFAL has an Agricultural Pesticides Technical Advisory Committee (APTAC) responsible for making appropriate decisions on the information and recommendations given by the APTAC-Sub-Committee. The APTAC-Sub-Committee reviews and evaluates all concerns of pesticides in Pakistan. Since the official forum to deal with industrial chemicals does not exist, the consolidated data on the industrial chemicals under the RC has not been collected for the import response.

The APTAC set up by the MINFAL evaluates all pesticides to avoid Severely Hazardous Pesticide Formulations (SHPFs). The eco-toxicological tests are done by various research laboratories. No SHPF is recommended unless it is evaluated by eco-toxicological labs.

(b) Gaps in capacity to meet the RC obligations

(c) Actions needed to fill the gaps

Priorities for action

  1. Import responses for the remaining two pesticides (methyl parathion and heptachlor) need to be updated and intimated to the RC Secretariat.
  2. Import response for 11 industrial chemicals need to be intimated to the RC Secretariat.
  3. Poly Chlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs), which have already been banned, need to be communicated to the RC Secretariat.
  4. The information on the status of the remaining five banned industrial chemicals together with the five banned asbestos categories need to be collected for import response on priority basis.
  5. The already banned pesticides other than the 28 RC pesticides should be notified to the RC Secretariat.
  6. Local criterion should be established to notify pesticides/chemicals to the RC Secretariat.

Consolidated set of tables based on the recommendations of the participants

Import response

Current legal infrastructure/admin procedure

What has been done?

What needs to be done?

Who is responsible/involved and how to do?

  • Pakistan Environment Protection Act 1997 (PEPA 1997)
  • Hazardous Substances Rules 2007 (to be notified)
  • Trade policy/Import Policy Order 2006-07/ (Annex-A Banned Items and Annex-B Restricted Items)
  • National Environment Policy 2005
  • Customs Act 1969
  • Agriculture Pesticide (Amendments) Ordinance 1997 (Originated from the Agriculture Pesticide Ordinance 1971)
  • Official Registration Form #16 & 17 available for pesticides registration
    • Import response for 26 pesticides have already been notified to RC Secretariat.
    • Inter-Ministerial/ Stakeholders Steering Committees for consultations/ follow-ups on RC.
      • Exiting legislation should be reviewed and revised for updating remaining 2 pesticides (Heptachlor and methyl parathion) and industrial chemicals.
      • Import responses for 2 pesticides and 11 industrial chemicals.
      • Enhanced Inter-Ministerial coordination. Both the DNAs from Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock (MINFAL) and from the Ministry of Environment (MoE) should actively collaborate in consultative processes in respect to RC.
      • A technical advisory group need to be established for providing inputs to DNAs for:
      • – Improvement in coordination between Public and private sectors.

        – Establishment of procedures to communicate import decisions to those concerned within the country.

      • Propagation of existing legislation and any change in legislation.
      • Improvement in Monitoring and Evaluation procedures and mechanisms.
      • List of Annex III Chemicals needs to be displayed on the website of line departments along with Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS).
        • DNA from MINFAL for pesticides.
        • DNA from MoE for industrial chemicals.
        • A Technical Advisory Group to be established for industrial chemicals and to be proposed by the DNAs to the National Steering Committee on SAICM.

          Notification

          Current legal infrastructure/admin procedure

          What has been done?

          What needs to be done?

          Who is responsible/involved and how to do?

          • PEPA 1997
          • Agriculture Pesticide (Amendments) Ordinance 1997 (Originated from the Agri. Pesticide Ordinance 1971)
          • Trade policy: Import Policy Order 2006-07 (Annex A Banned Items and Annex B Restricted Items
          • Relevant sections of Factories Act 1934.
          • Pesticides Registration forms #1, 16 and 17
          • Hazardous Substances Rules, 2007 (Draft)
          • Twenty six (26) pesticides have been notified to the RC Secretariat.
          • Pesticides and chemicals be notified in the light of existing legislation.
          • Technical assistance from RC Secretariat for awareness campaign for stakeholders.
          • Development of database of these Pesticides/Chemicals used in the country in accordance with Annexure I.
          • A Data Management Cell need to be established.
          • Improvement in Monitoring and Evaluation procedures and mechanisms.

          The two DNAs:

          • MINFAL
          • MoE

          In collaboration with:

          • Ministry of Industries and Production,
          • Ministry of Commerce,
          • Central Board of Revenue and other relevant departments.

          Export notification

          Current practice

          What has been done?

          What needs to be done?

          Who is responsible/involved and how to do?

          • Provision in Export Policy Order 2006-07 vide Import and Export Control Act 1950 (xxxix of 1950).
          • Agriculture Pesticides Act 2006 (in process).
          • Pakistan is not an exporting country with reference to hazardous chemicals and pesticides.
          • Acknowledgement of Export Notifications to the exporting countries.
          • Trade policy already exists which is reviewed annually and as and when required.
          • Pesticides and chemicals need to be notified in light of existing legislation.
          • Technical assistance from RC Secretariat for awareness campaign for stakeholders.
          • Development of Database of these Pesticides/Chemicals used in the country.
          • A Data Management Cell need to be established.
          • Improvement in Monitoring and Evaluation procedures and mechanisms.
          • MINFAL and MoE, the two DNAs in Pakistan.
          • Information provided by exporters is to be used by the Policy makers and regulators, and R&D Institutes.

          Proposals for SHPF

          Available infrastructures for pesticides poisoning report

          What has been done?

          What could be done in the future?

          Who is responsible/involved and how to do?

          • Agriculture Extension Department
          • Pakistan Medical Research Council
          • National Institute of Health
          • ABR-Bio-sciences has published some information on pesticides poisoning
          • Fragmented studies have been done by R&D Institutes and Universities
          • All the fragmented information needs to be compiled at the National level;
          • Capacity building of stakeholders on Harmonized System codes and Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS)
          • DNAs/MINFAL, MoE, Ministry of Health;
          • Health Department workers, Agriculture Extension Officers, Doctors, Teachers and Environmental Inspectors should contribute;
          • Existing legislation should be reviewed and revised in context of RC requirements.

          Appendix 1: List of participants

          Ministry of Environment, Islamabad

          Mr Khizar Hayat Khan
          Joint Secretary (IC)
          Phone: 051-9202558
          Mobile: 0345-5938433
          E-mail: khizarjsic@yahoo.com

          Mr Manzoor Alam Qureshi
          Deputy Secretary
          Phone: 9203025
          Mobile: 0304-9543625
          E-mail: m_a_q1@yahoo.com

          Mr Noor-Ul-Hadi
          Deputy Project Manager
          MEAs Secretariat
          Mobile: 0300-5933717
          E-mail: hadinoorul@yahoo.com

          Mr Tariq Nazir
          Section Officer (IC-I)
          Mobile: 0300-9508300
          E-mail: saadta@comsats.net.pk

          Mr Muhammad Maqsood Akhtar
          Deputy Programme Manager
          Ozone Cell
          Phone: 9205884
          Mobile: 0333-5112111
          Fax: 9205883

          Mr Asif Hanif
          Deputy Project Manager
          MEAs Secretariat
          Phone: 9230447
          Mobile: 0345-5067197
          E-mail: asifhanif11@hotmail.com

          Mr Ahmad Hussain
          Deputy Project Manager
          MEAs Secretariat
          Phone: 9230447
          Mobile: 0333-5211899
          E-mail: ahmaddof@yahoo.com

          Mr Fateh Ali Khan
          Deputy Project Manager
          MEAs Secretariat
          Phone: 9230447
          Mobile: 0333-5644746

          Syed Hashim Raza Zaidi
          Subject Specialist
          MEAs Secretariat
          Phone: 9230447
          Mobile: 0321-5288556

          Syed Zaheer Ahmad Gillani
          Project Manager
          National MEAs Secretariat
          Phone: 9230447
          Mobile: 0300-5500831
          E-mail: gillanisza@yahoo.com

          Mr Zaigham Abbas
          Technical Officer (Chemicals)
          Phone: 051-9205317
          Mobile: 0300-4248131
          E-mail: mzaigham75@yahoo.com

          Department of Environmental Science, University of Peshawar

          Mr Muhammad Nafees
          Lecturer
          Phone: 091-9216742
          Mobile: 0345-9117897
          Fax: 091-9216742
          E-mail: Nafees36@yahoo.com

          Dr Hizbullah Khan
          Assistant Professor
          Phone: 091-9216742
          Mobile: 0300-5917714
          E-mail: hizbullah@upesh.edu.pk

          Dr Noor Jehan
          Assistant Professor
          Phone: 091-9216742
          Mobile: 0300-5823990
          Fax: 091-9216742
          E-mail: Noorjpic1984@yahoo.com

          Pak-EPA, N.W.F.P

          Mr Muhammad Jamshed Hasni
          Director General
          Balochistan
          Phone: 081-9201840

          Mr Mohammad Ali Khan
          Assistant Director
          Phone: 091-9210282
          Mobile: 0321-9009857
          Fax: 091-9210280

          Mr Imran Ali
          Chemist
          Phone: 051-7102136
          Mobile: 0333-5154049
          Fax: 051-9267622
          E-mail: Epa_ali@yahoo.com

          Mr Shams-ur-Rehman
          Chief Analyst

          Pakistan Agriculture Research Council (PARC)

          Mr M. Azeem Khan
          NPO
          Phone: 051-9255178
          Mobile: 0300-9716115

          Dr Iftikhar Ahmad
          Phone: 051-9801918
          Fax: 051-9208421/9202968
          E-mail: iftahmad@gmail.com

          Other Organizations in Pakistan

          Mr Masood-ul-Hassan Qureshi
          Deputy Chief (Export)
          Ministry of Commerce
          Phone: 9206411
          E-mail: masood_hasan@hotmail.com

          Mr Muhmood A. Khawaja
          Visiting Resource Fellow (VRF)
          Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI)
          Phone: 051-2278124
          Fax: 051-2278135
          E-mail: Khwaja@sdpi.org

          Mr Muhammad Nawaz Chaudhary
          Professor
          College of Earth and Environmental Science,
          Punjab University, Lahore
          Phone: 9231272
          Mobile: 0345-4005008
          E-mail: Muhammadnawazchaudhry@yahoo.com

          Mr Asad Ali Shah
          Research Officer
          Ministry of Industry, Production and
          Special Initiative
          Phone: 051-9207727
          Mobile: 0321-9610982
          Fax: 051-9205130
          E-mail: Asadaerc@yahoo.com

          Mr Raja Ahsan Farid
          Vice President
          Federation of Pakistan, Chambers of
          Commerce and Industry
          Phone: 051-2251891
          Mobile: 0300-5568229
          Fax: 051-2251894
          E-mail: fpcci.isb@cyber.net.pit

          Ms Nuzhat Khan
          Senior Research Officer
          National Institute of Oceanography, Karachi
          Phone: 9251172-8
          Mobile: 0333-2247187
          Fax: 9251179
          E-mail: nuzhat@gmail.com

          Mr Muhammad Javaid
          Deputy Director
          Environmental Protection Department (Punjab)
          Phone: 9212606-07
          Mobile: 0333-4097258
          E-mail: Javaid_epd@yahoo.com

          Prof. Iftikhar Hussain
          Professor
          College of Earth and Environmental Science,
          University of Punjab, Lahore
          Phone: 042-9231272
          Mobile: 0300-9406031
          Fax: 042-5900038
          E-mail: ihbaloch99@hotmail.com

          Mr Hasnain Mahmood Muzaffar
          T.O. (Polymer)
          Descon Chemical Pvt. (Ltd.), Lahore
          Phone: 042-7974047-0; 042-6372042-5
          Mobile: 322-4435658
          Fax: 042-7970229
          E-mail: Hasnain_muzaffar@hotmail.com

          Mr Muhammad Irfan Khan
          Chairman of Environmental Science Department
          International Islamic University, Department of
          Environmental Science, Islamabad
          Phone: 9258984
          Mobile: 0300-9779205
          Fax: 2614664
          E-mail: drirfan@iiu.edu.pk

          Mr Shaukat Farooq
          HEC-FFHP Professor
          Mobile: 0321-5175245
          E-mail: Shaukat48@hotmail.com

          Mr Tanveer Ahmed
          Assistant Manager HSE
          Sitara Chemical Industries
          Mobile: 0333-4514371

          Mr Zahid Ullah
          Lecturer
          Department of Environment of Sciences, AIOU,
          Islamabad
          Phone: 051-9250047
          Mobiles: 0300-5836402, 051-9057726
          E-mails: Zahid_auru@yahoo.com
          Zahid_@yahoo.com

          Mr Shahid Abdullah
          Entomologist
          Department of Plant Protection
          Phone: 051-9203794, 021-9248607
          Fax: 051-9203794, 021-9248673
          Mobile: 0300-5331103

          Mr Yasir Hussain
          Deputy Director
          Department of Tourism and Environment
          Mobile: 0301-5640642
          E-mail: sky2006.yasir@gmail.com

          Sri Lanka

          Mr Gamini Manuweera
          Registrar of Pesticides
          Department of Agriculture, Sri Lanka
          Phone: +94812388076
          Mobile: 0777809796
          Fax: +94812388135
          E-mail: pest@s.lt.lk

          Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

          Mr Bill Murray
          Rotterdam Convention Secretariat
          FAO of the UN
          Viale delle Terme di Caracalla
          00100 Rome, Italy
          Phone: +39 06 5705 3441
          Fax: +39 06 5705 6347
          E-mail: pic@pic.int

          Mr Yongfan Piao
          Plant Protection Officer
          FAO of the UN
          Bangkok, Thailand
          Phone: 66-2-6976268
          E-mail: Yongfan.piao@fao.org

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