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The CCNE Region - Regional Coordinator Saudi Arabia

In 1999 the 23rd session of the Codex Alimentarius Commission established the Regional Coordinating Committee for the Near East, bringing together countries in the Near East Region (for FAO) and the Eastern Mediterranean Region (for WHO). The committee held its first meeting in Cairo, Egypt in 2001.

The current regional coordinator for the Near East is based in the Saudi Food and Drug Authority in Riyadh.

The coordinator’s goals in leading the region in Codex include developing and strengthening Codex Contact Points and National Codex Committees as well as improving communication and coordination amongst CCNE members, with other regions and the Codex Secretariat.

A further objective is to develop the exchange of scientific and technical expertise amongst experienced and less experienced countries in the region.

The coordinator aims to promote the use of Codex standards as a basis for national legislation and regulations and continue work developing and reviewing Codex standards taking into account regional interests.


News from the region

Celebrating the 60th anniversary of Codex in UAE

By Khadija Qalandari, Acting, Head of Technical Follow-up Standard Specifications Section, UAE   The UAE National Codex Committee (NCC), led by the Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA), in coordination with the Ministry of Industry and Higher Technology (CCP), organised a scientific workshop to mark the 60th anniversary of the first meeting of the Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC). The workshop was held to review the work of Codex and highlight its role in the development of international standards. The audience of the [...]
29 December 2023

Near East Coordinator reflects on a four-year hiatus for the regional committee

This year's edition of the CODEX magazine, titled "60 years of standards", is out now! Read some of our articles online and click on the link below to download the full publication. This article by Khalid Al Zhrani (Saudi Arabia), Regional Coordinator for the Near EastAfter a gap of 4 years due mainly to the Codex pandemic and the challenge of finding space on the calendar, CCNE11 brought the latest round of Coordinating Committees to a close. The Regional Coordinator looks back on the [...]
26 November 2023

Codex: a gift of 60 years

Iraq’s Central Organization for Standardization and Quality Control organized a symposium in cooperation with the Iraqi College of Engineering Sciences, entitled “The Importance of the Codex Alimentarius in Promoting Food Safety”. The  slogan of the event was “sustainable food standards, a vision for a better world”, and it served as an introduction to the Codex Alimentarius Commission. The symposium highlighted the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Codex Alimentarius Commission and the importance of Codex’s food safety standards . and [...]
23 November 2023

Egypt joins World Standards Day celebrations

On 14 October, Egypt joined standard setting organizations in celebrating “World Standards Day” 2023. Dr Khaled Sofi, Chairperson of the Egyptian Organization for Standardization and Quality (EOS) and Egyptian Codex, highlighted the importance of this year’s slogan, Shared vision for a better world: Incorporating SDG 3, by recalling that adopting Codex standards as the basis for the national legislation contributes to protecting consumer health within and beyond national borders. “Strengthening food safety systems will enable countries to take measures to [...]
14 October 2023

Egypt celebrates 50 years of participation in Codex Alimentarius

Egypt celebrated a milestone: 50 years participating in Codex work, marked by a commitment to the principles and objectives of the joint FAO/WHO programme. Celebrations hosted by Dr Khaled Soufi, Chairperson of the Egyptian Organization for Standardization and Quality (EOS) and Codex Egypt, and Dr Ashraf El Gazayerli, Chairperson of the Chamber of Food Industries (CFI), took place in Cairo with the participation of Raj Rajasekar CAC Vice-chairperson, Khalid AlZhrani, CCNE Chairperson, Hakim Mufumbiro, CCAFRICA Coordinator, along with FAO staff. [...]
27 September 2023

CCNE11 / Moving forward in facilitating safe trade in the region

The FAO/WHO Coordinating Committee for the Near East (CCNE) will be sending for adoption to Step 5 the regional standard for maamoul. Maamoul is a traditional Middle Eastern baked product, enjoyed by millions in the region and of high relevance for CCNE members: “Having a Codex standard for maamoul is fundamental for the region as it would directly contribute not only to consumer health, but also to promote the trade of this product internationally” - said Khalid AlZharani Chairperson of [...]
22 September 2023

CCNE11 underway / Strengthening cooperation on food safety and quality issues in the region

The eleventh session of the FAO/WHO Coordinating Committee for Near East (CCNE) commenced today, marking an important milestone in regional collaboration on food safety and quality standards. The meeting, chaired by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, is taking place on 18 – 22 September 2023 in Rome, at the FAO headquarters with representatives from 17 countries joining in person and virtually. “I urge everyone to exchange scientific expertise and promote the use of Codex Alimentarius Commission standards as a basis for [...]
18 September 2023

The Chairperson of the Coordinating Committee for the Near East talks to us ahead of September meeting

The eleventh meeting of the Codex Coordinating Committee for the Near East (CCNE) will take place 18–22 September at FAO headquarters in Rome. We spoke to Khalid S Al Zhrani, from the Saudi Food and Drug Authority (SFDA), who will chair CCNE11 on behalf of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the current Regional Coordinator for the Near East, to find out more about him and his expectations for the meeting. Q. Khalid, thanks for your time. For those who don’t know you, could [...]
23 August 2023

Qatari authorities join forces on World Food Safety Day

The Qatar General Authority for Standardization and Metrology held World Food Safety Day events on 7 and 8 June under the theme “Food standards save lives”. Celebrations took place in collaboration with the Municipality, Qatar University, and Monoprix supermarkets and included a popup stall showcasing awareness videos and emphasizing the importance of food safety to consumers and children. Leaflets were distributed and colouring sessions and games were organized for children. There were three key messages the events were aiming to highlight: The [...]
27 July 2023

Updating the National Ambient Air Quality Standards in Line with the WHO Air Quality Guidelines

A Regional Expert Consultation was held on 6-8 June 2023 in Amman, Jordan, to Harmonize the National Ambient Air Quality Standards in The Eastern Mediterranean Region (EMR) in Line with WHO Air Quality Guidelines. The consultation was organized by the Climate Change, Health and Environment unit / Healthier Populations Department/ Regional Office of the Eastern Mediterranean and attended by 40 air quality & health experts (32 in person and 8 virtual) from the ministries of health and environment, research centres, and [...]
25 July 2023
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Video Message

CCNE Coordinator

All information on Codex is public and free.

For regional enquiries contact:

CCNE Secretariat

Saudi Food & Drug Authority
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Tel: +966 11 2038222 Ext:3347

Email: [email protected]