Adoption streamlines phytosanitary certification
Government and local private sector representatives have marked Thailand’s full integration into the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) ePhyto Hub, a move that is projected to save the country US$ 3.5 million a year and enhance its competitiveness.
A phytosanitary certificate is a legal document issued by a country’s National Plant Protection Organisation for exports of plants and goods of plant origin certifying that they are free of specific pests and diseases.
The Alliance supported Thailand’s Ministry of Agriculture, National Bureau of Agricultural Commodity and Food Standards, Thai Customs, and the local private sector in integrating into Hub, allowing traders to exchange necessary export and import documentation with key markets quickly, accurately, and at low cost.
The integration, which is being done through the country’s Single Window, will modernise trade with key markets in several, practical ways, including improving planning for the arrival and clearance of goods, expediting clearance of produce from ports, streamlining completion of required certification, and enabling quick corrections of errors.
Participation in the Hub means Thailand can exchange ePhytos with major trading partners, including Australia, Indonesia, New Zealand, South Korea, and the United States. The country issued almost 410,000 phytosanitary certificates in 2021.
The agri-food sector plays a key role in Thailand’s economy, representing 8% of GDP and employing roughly 6.4 million people – almost one-third of the total labour force.
At an official event in Bangkok on March 27 to formally launch the successful project completion, participants praised the Alliance’s public private partnership approach to trade facilitation.
“The ePhyto system significantly enhances the synergy between government agencies and private sectors,” said Pisan Pongsapich Secretary-General of the National Bureau of Agricultural Commodity and Food Standards. “This innovative digital platform enables all stakeholders to constructively share views and work together to further develop the ePhyto system to meet our traders’ needs.”