National Confederation of Industry Brazil (CNI) and Agriculture and Livestock (CNA) presented 5 proposals to reduce barriers to Brazilian exports in the WTO

CNI (Industry) and CNA (Agriculture and Livestock) presented five proposals to the Brazilian government to improve the implementation of the Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (the “SPS Agreement”), of the World Trade Organization (WTO). Non-tariff barriers reduce Brazilian exports by 14% per year.

Among the proposals, the private sector suggests that the 164 WTO members establish a timetable for the recognition of pest and disease-free areas. If a country does not grant recognition and prevent importation, it must provide the criteria for the exporting country to obtain the certificate.

CNI and CNA recommend that the importing country consider the technical-scientific opinions of the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) and the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC), supervised by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). These two international bodies attest, in a neutral way, whether or not an area is free of pests and diseases.

Another proposal aims to reduce costs and bureaucracy for exporters. The Confederations recommend countries to explain their decisions when they refuse to sign agreements on mutual recognition of sanitary and phytosanitary measures. The lack of this agreement prevents producers, for example, from using health certificates from their countries and obliges them to issue new certificates in the importing country. Although it is an excellent tool to speed up trade, there are countries that want to preserve their own bureaucracy and refuse to recognize the health standards of the trading partner.

For the Brazilian industry, agriculture and livestock sectors, WTO committees should receive and take into account the studies and indicators from the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) and the Codex Alimentarius. These institutions are part of the committees only as observers.

In addition, CNI and CNA evaluate that the deadlines for control, inspection and approval of imported products should be the same for national goods. It is common for countries to use delays in procedures as barriers to the entry of foreign goods. Another proposal is to increase the transparency of interim measures by requiring countries to adopt scientific evidence to impose any trade restriction.

Last year, Brazilian industry submitted three proposals for revising the WTO Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade. They were adopted by the Brazilian government and two of them were adopted by the WTO: stimulating mutual recognition and equivalence of technical regulations and improvements in the monitoring system of the Committee on Technical Barriers to Trade.

Source: CNI