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Food security legislation required to protect animal health.

In spite of dire need for a 'National Sanitary and Phytosanitary Authority Act' to drive exports of agricultural products it is moving at a slow pace. The proposed SPS authority will work to ensure food safety and protect animal and plant health. An official of the ministry dealing with the subject said the draft bill will be sent to the prime minister for approval before submission to the parliament for enactment. It has been proposed that the federal authorities would be responsible for the overall design of the SPS control system, for international linkages, and for sampling and certification of all consignments. The proposed authority will separate the development and control functions in animal and plant health services. Current SPS-related regulations in Pakistan are based on the Plant Quarantine Act (1976), the Pakistan Animal Quarantine Act (1979), the IPPC, the OIE, Codex Alimentarius and the International Standards for Phytosanitary Measures (ISPM).

These rules need to be upgraded and integrated. The draft act, according to the official, will establish the governance mechanism and the principles on which it should operate. It would also define roles of the federal and provincial authorities and powers of inspectors, and adopt the principles set out within the SPS agreement.

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Publication:Pakistan Food Journal
Date:Apr 30, 2016
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