unctad.org | UNCTAD presents updates of its projects in Laos and Tanzania during Biofach 2017
UNCTAD presents updates of its projects in Laos and Tanzania during Biofach 2017
17 February 2017
Biofach Conference
Nurnberg, Germany

Key Issues

​During biofach 2017, UNCTAD presented the state of play of its projects on organic agriculture, namely its participation on the two UN-cluster projects in Tanzania and Lao PDR, as well as its recent and ongoing work on mapping financing issues for organic agriculture in Africa.  The audience was composed of officials from Benin, Uganda and Tanzania, as well as private sector groups from Europe, India and Madagascar.  Other organic agriculture institutions and project partners such as FiBL and the Tanzania Organic Movement Association (TOAM) were also present.

Participants called for the approach being used in Lao PDR and at the United Republic of Tanzania to be extended to other countries. The approach - which consists of linking the tourism and agricultural sectors to generate dynamics for organic markets in developing countries - resonates well with existing demands and capacities currently existing in developing country markets. Representatives from Madagascar and Uganda have demonstrated interest to become beneficiaries of similarly designed projects, in special to help them strengthen national certification bodies, as well as strengthening standard harmonization work towards exporting facilitation to Regional and international markets. Business representatives from Khazakhstan have also shown interest in the theme, as the country launches OA schemes and seeks to organize a conference in the topic during 2017.

Representatives from Uganda praised the country-focused  approach being used by the trade cluster, but also stressed the importance of a strategic dimension to the work on Organic Agriculture, suggesting that this should also include broader harmonization of standards across multiple countries in order to facilitate regional trade and upscaling of markets.

A participant from Tanzania demonstrated interest in the approach being used in Lao PDR to streghten the national certification bodies as to promote trade diplomacy and facilitation in organics, achieving the  broadest possible geographic coverage. Tanzanian officials also mentioned their keen interest to see the next steps of the organic project in the country, as the second phase starts in 2017. Tanzanian private sector representatives also called for a stronger focus on making sure that Zanzibar benefits as well from the project as mainland Tanzania.

Representatives from an Indian business delegation have shown strong interest  in Tanzanian organic markets, suggesting that the UN Cluster should aim to bring additional stakeholders - who can help to increase market dynamics - to meetings and activities in the future, as this can help generate business linkages across different continents.

The UN Inter-Agency Cluster on Trade and Productive Capacity is a cooperation between UNCTAD, ILO, ITC, UNIDO and UNOPS, and is financially supported by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO).

Related Sites:

Trade and Environment, Climate Change and Sustainable Development

Biofach 2017
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