UN Forum on Sustainability Standards (UNFSS) briefing sessions for ASEAN and the Philippines on policy and strategic approaches towards voluntary sustainability standards
24 - 25 October 2013
San Fernando, Philippines

Key Issues

The UN Forum on Sustainability Standards (UNFSS), a joint initiative of UNCTAD, FAO, ITC, UNEP and UNIDO, will hold workshops for ASEAN and for the Philippines, jointly organized by UNFSS and the Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Product Standards, Department of Agriculture of the Philippines, which will take place on October 24th and October 25th in San Fernando, the Philippines to discuss policy approaches, strategies and public-private sector collaboration that aim to realize the potential contribution of voluntary sustainability standards (VSS) to achieve sustainable development objectives and facilitate market access.

The workshops are targeted at key decision-makers and stakeholders from government, the private sector, civil society and academia. High-level speakers and panellists comprise officials from the Departments of Agriculture of ASEAN member countries, the UNFSS and collaborating UN agencies, the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Thai Board of Trade, producer and exporter associations in addition to other national and international standards' experts. They will have the opportunity to exchange their views and share with participants their experiences related to voluntary sustainability standards (VSS) from national and regional perspectives. The aim of the meeting is to explore options for public and private sector collaboration and coordinated as well as strategic approaches to achieve sustainable development goals and facilitate market access, at national levels and in the ASEAN region.

The thematic focus of the workshops will be on Good Agricultural Practice (GAP) and organic standards as well as the contribution UNFSS can make to the national and regional management of VSS. In particular, the coexistence of and modular approaches between GAP programmes and commercial GAP standards to serve different domestic and international market segments and the challenges and opportunities arising from the development of an ASEAN organic standards scheme will be discussed.

Besides, participants will obtain first hand information on the objectives, added value and priority activities of the UNFSS for 2014-2015 and can give feedback on issues of interest and concern related to VSS of relevance for ASEAN and for the Philippines, which they feel UNFSS should take up as priority activities in its future work.​

Co-organized with:The UN Forum on Sustainability Standards (UNFSS), Coordination Group, Geneva, Switzerland; and The Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Product Standards (BAFPS), Department of Agriculture of the Philippines, Quezon City, The Philippines
Sponsor / funding:Department of Agriculture of the Philippines and the UN Forum on Sustainability Standards (UNFSS)
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