Consumers in Cambodia, Thailand, and Vietnam will enjoy fresh and safe fruit and vegetable while the three countries will benefit the better trade flow of agriculture goods, and hopefully an increase of agricultural exports and revenues among the three countries. Additionally, officers at the three border check points for food safety and phytosanitary measures will find it easier to work.
The Project of the Facilitating Trade for Agricultural Goods in ASEAN (FTAG) has initiated the Regional Study on “Assessment of Framework Conditions for Trade in Fresh Fruits and Vegetable in Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam” with specific emphasis on trade in mango, longan, lychee, dragon fruit, banana and chili. The objective of the study is to provide overview of the current trade situation and conditions and to identify potential obstacles, and gaps, as well as recommendations to improve and facilitate better trade in the three countries. Integral part of the regional study are three country specific studies.
The country results as well as the regional studies were recently presented in Phnom Penh, Cambodia at the Regional Workshop on the Assessment Study of Facilitating Trade for Agricultural Goods in ASEAN and the 2nd Steering Committee Meeting on 26-27 April 2018.
The event served as a platform to present and discuss findings of the national and regional studies and to agree on activities in the field of phytosanitary measures and food safety to overcome trade facilitation obstacles of the selected six agricultural commodities in the three countries. Twenty-three participants including Steering Committee Members and technical officers from Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam attended this event.
In the 1st Steering Committee Meeting on 11 – 12 October 2017 held in Bangkok, Thailand, the assessment study on regulatory framework and procedures to identify existing challenges, barriers, gaps and recommendations had been agreed, and the six proposed potential crops had been selected.
Within ASEAN approximately only 30 percent of trade takes place between the Member States. In general, the level of intra-ASEAN trade is low. Trade in agricultural goods (fruits and vegetables) between Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam is significantly higher compared to other ASEAN Member States. However, gaps in the regulations on food safety and phytosanitary measures are hindering and slowing down the trade flow of agricultural goods.
Trade facilitation through the simplification of trade procedures can help reducing time and costs to move goods across borders. This will provide advantages for producers and traders by increasing the competitiveness.
Therefore, the Global Trade Fund for Development commissioned by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and implementing by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH in collaboration with country partner agencies, i.e. the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF), Cambodia, the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives (MOAC), Thailand and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) in Vietnam.
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