The key elements of the Tajikistan National Food Safety Strategy will be the focus of a round table to be organized on 23 September 2014 by the International Trade Centre (ITC) and the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of Tajikistan in Dushanbe city.
Stakeholders, including members of the inter-ministerial working group on developing the National Food Safety Strategy consisting of senior officials from the relevant ministries and agencies, private sector and other interested national stakeholders will discuss the proposed structure, key elements and strategies of the National Strategy on Food Safety.
The ITC assistance is provided in the framework of its project, which supports the Republic of Tajikistan in implementation of the WTO provisions and the Government’s WTO commitments. The ITC project is funded by the Government of Switzerland within its Trade Cooperation Program (TCP) in Tajikistan.
Development of the National Food Safety Strategy of Tajikistan is one of the major activities of the country’s National Post-WTO Accession Plan. Dr. Namrata Wakhaloo, ITC international consultant on food safety, says “the strategy will serve as a roadmap for the Government of Tajikistan to establish a cost effective and efficient system for achieving the level of food safety that is acceptable for the consumers. The proposed structure of the Strategy, in addition to describing food safety challenges in the country, will analyse the current national food control system to identify the gaps with regard to an effective and efficient food control system, and highlight the main activities and timeframe to be undertaken to achieve the food safety policy”.
At the roundtable today the senior executive representatives from the related governmental agencies will also discuss the institutional arrangements and coordination mechanism for implementing the strategy, as well as agree on crucial actions have to be taken to implement the strategy and its financial implications.
The working group on development of the food safety strategy was founded as a result of joint ITC and MEDT efforts in April 2014. The ITC has provided the working group with technical support, including guidance and consultation for development of the strategy.
The ITC is providing assistance to the Republic of Tajikistan in the food safety area since 2011, when it developed a matrix of agencies responsible for food safety in Tajikistan, which helped to identify gaps and duplication of activities, and served as a basis for recommendations on revising the distribution of roles and responsibilities between agencies.
The ITC, through this technical assistance project, is committed to support Tajikistan’s public and private sector in strengthening their knowledge of the opportunities and challenges stemming from the WTO membership.
Swiss support: Within its Cooperation Strategy for 2012-2015, Switzerland focuses on four sectors in Tajikistan; Health, Rule of Law, Drinking Water Supply and Sanitation, and Private Sector Development. The overall goal of Swiss Cooperation in Tajikistan is to support the transition process in the country through contributing to economic development and by helping build institutions and systems which are responsive to the population’s needs. www.swisscoop.tj, www.deza.admin.ch, www.seco-cooperation.admin.ch