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    Three New Joint Publications

     

     
     
    International Trade Forum - Issue 2/2007, © International Trade Centre

    New guides on tariffs, food safety and quality management to help exporting small firms boost their international competitiveness.

    World Tariff Profiles 2006

    A joint publication of WTO, UNCTAD and ITC Perhaps more than in any previous multilateral round of trade negotiations, "tariffs" and "formulas" are at the core of the Doha negotiations. Up to now, access to these data was cumbersome and limited to a closed circle of trade specialists. The publication provides a comprehensive picture of national tariff profiles for each of the 150 WTO members.

    • Summary tables for WTO members, other countries and customs territories show cross-country comparison, as well as a comparison of the levels of bound and applied duties, for both agricultural and non-agricultural products.
    • Country pages cover domestic market access protection and the protection faced in the top six export markets.
    • Data sources, a glossary and methodology outlining the calculation of ad valorem equivalents and to different aggregation methods for tariff averages round out the publication.
    WTO, UNCTAD and ITC have proven track records in tariff analysis and comparative strengths. WTO, as the repository of its members' binding commitments on goods and notifications on their most favoured nation (MFN) applied tariffs, was at the core of the undertaking. UNCTAD and ITC provided missing or more up-to-date MFN applied tariffs, as well as tariff information on preferential duties, which is not the subject of a WTO notification requirement. ITC converted nearly all non-ad valorem duties into ad valorem equivalents.

    To obtain copies of World Tariff Profiles, visit ITC's web site: http://www.intracen.org/eshop or contact publications@wto.org



    A Step-by-Step Guide to Food Safety Requirements

    New ITC/ISO handbook targets small firms ITC and ISO (International Organization for Standardization) have just released a handbook and diagnostic CD-ROM to make it easier for small, food product exporting firms to understand and meet food safety standards for international markets. ISO 22000 Food Safety Management Systems - An easy-to-use checklist for small business - Are you ready? helps firms looking to understand the ISO standard for food safety management, ISO 22000:2005. "If we don't provide this information, small firms may find out the hard way," says Patricia R. Francis, ITC's Executive Director. "With so many firms in developing countries working in the agricultural sector, a tool like this can make a real difference in helping them understand and meet international standards.

    "National trade support institutions need to have the right system in place for their food exporters," she added. A trade alert system can help exporters keep up to date with the latest requirements. This new handbook and CD-ROM are valuable additions to the system, because they can be used as diagnostic, counselling and training tools.

    Understanding this standard can provide the entry ticket to participation in cross-border food supply chains. Less than two years after the publication of ISO 22000, organizations in over 50 countries are using the standard as an alternative to more than 20 food safety schemes developed by companies or associations to audit their suppliers.

    Compliance with ISO 22000 can be a foundation to meet more specific requirements by various global food retailers, thus facilitating market access.

    Since ISO 22000 incorporates the principles of "Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point" (HACCP) developed by the Codex Alimentarius Commission, certification to ISO 22000 also demonstrates compliance with HACCP - a mandatory requirement when exporting some food products to specific markets.

    A checklist of questions covers the set-up, implementation and certification of a food safety management system according to ISO 22000. Working through the questions helps company managers understand what parts of their business they need to improve in order to be compliant. Depending on whether "yes" or "no" answers are given to the checklist questions, the user is directed to the next stage or to additional guidance. The CD-ROM allows electronic navigation through the checklist. It also generates automated reports on the level of ISO 22000 maturity of the user's enterprise.

    In their joint preface to the handbook, Ms Francis and ISO Secretary-General Alan Bryden declare: "We hope that this handbook on ISO 22000 will be of benefit to small businesses, especially in developing countries and transition economies, in their effort to improve their market share of food and agricultural products in the global market."

    ISO 22000 Food Safety Management Systems - An easy-to-use checklist for small business - Are you ready? is available in English and French from ITC and ISO.

    For more information or to purchase a copy:
    -
    ITC web site
    -ISOweb site

    Bangladesh Launches National Version of Export Quality Management Book

    The Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) has recently customized ITC's book Export Quality Management: An answer book for small and medium-sized exporters. The adaptation was completed as part of the Bangladesh Quality Support Programme, which is being supported by the European Commission (EC) in Bangladesh and implemented by ITC. The joint publication provides managers of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with answers to their most frequently asked questions on standards, conformity assessment and metrology. It allows partner organizations to describe the quality infrastructure in their country and to list the contact details of organizations working in this area, providing important information to SMEs involved or interested in exporting. To date, the book has been customized by 12 countries and is available in seven languages.


    © DCCI

    Senior DCCI officials with EC delegation and ITC representatives at the ceremony to launch the book.

    The Bangladeshi version of the book can be obtained from the Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry

    For more information, contact Shyam Gujadhur



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