• Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture
  • Agriculture: A priority for sustainable development in the Americas

Trade Facilitation Agreement and its Relation to Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures

Event Date: 
San José, Costa Rica
All, Headquarters
  • Description
  • Program
  • Live Transmission



The Trade Facilitation Agreement, signed at the Ninth World Trade Organization (WTO) Ministerial Conference held in Bali, Indonesia (2013), contains provisions for expediting the movement, release and clearance of goods, including goods in transit. It also sets out measures for effective cooperation between customs and other appropriate authorities on trade facilitation and customs compliance issues. It further contains provisions for technical assistance and capacity building in this area. (World Trade Organization, 2015).

The Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures establishes the right of any member country to adopt the necessary sanitary and phytosanitary measures to protect human and animal health as well as the phytosanitary situation, provided that such measures do not constitute a restriction on trade and are based on scientific principles.

The entry into force of the Trade Facilitation Agreement sets into motion a dialogue among agricultural health and food safety authorities on a national and regional level regarding the adoption of measures for an effective implementation of the agreement, bearing in mind its objective of protecting human and animal health.

General Objective

To strengthen the capacities of participants by increasing their knowledge of the provisions of the Trade Facilitation Agreement of the World Trade Organization, its relation to the Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures, and experiences with the use of electronic certification as a way of facilitating the trading of goods.

Specific Objectives

  1. To provide participants with an overview of the importance, aspects and content of the Trade Facilitation Agreement.
  2. To analyze the relationship between the Trade Facilitation Agreement and the Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures.
  3. To illustrate the application of the Trade Facilitation Agreement through a case study.


Costa Rica TimeActivitySpeakers
09:00 – 09:10WelcomeRobert Ahern, Leader, Agricultural Health and Food Safety IICA
09:10 – 09:40The Trade Facilitation Agreement: Importance and StructureRoy Santana, Counsellor Market Access Division World Trade Organization
09:40 – 10:10Analysis of the Relationship between the Trade Facilitation Agreement and the Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary MeasuresChristiane Wolff, Counsellor Agriculture & Commodities Division SPS Section World Trade Organization
10:10 – 10:40Case Study of the Application of the Trade Facilitation Agreement: “The Electronic Certification” Christiane Wolff
10:40 – 11:10Questions and comments
11:10 – 11:15Close of event

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