DG Azevêdo welcomed to the WTO headquarters in Geneva the 24 participants of this edition of the Advanced Course on Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures, taking place from 28 October to 15 November 2019. Since its inception in 2005, the course has trained over 350 government officials, benefiting altogether 124 developing countries, 38 of them least developed countries. The course is organized jointly by the Agriculture and Commodities Division and the Institute for Training and Technical Cooperation, with support by the Standards and Trade Development Facility.

DG Azevêdo encouraged the group to work actively on their action plans, noting that over the years, participants have taken home the tools they need to enhance sanitary and phytosanitary capacities in their countries. This has resulted, among other things, in opening new markets through improved compliance capacity of domestic businesses, and in strengthened consumer protection and plant and animal health.

“All these projects have had something in common: a passionate person working hard to make a positive difference in their country,” said DG Azevêdo. He invited participants to tap into their leadership, persuasion and communication skills in the implementation of these plans when they go back to their capitals. His full speech is available here.

The course places emphasis on participants' leadership and initiative in implementing SPS actions. With an informal motto of “you make the difference”, the training activity requires the participants to develop an action plan, with the help of experienced coaches, to address SPS-related difficulties in their countries.

During their time in Geneva, participants in the Advanced Course will also have the opportunity to attend meetings of the SPS Committee and a thematic session on approval procedures to better understand the day-to-day work of the Committee.

Ad hoc sessions will be organised to allow participants to network and share experiences with WTO experts, capital- and Geneva-based delegates as well as representatives from other international organizations active in SPS-related matters, including the Codex Alimentarius Commission, the International Plant Protection Convention and the World Organisation for Animal Health.

List of participants

  • Mr Christopher Depaul WORRELL (Bahamas)
  • Ms Hanna SANDUL (Belarus)
  • Mr Jakub BUTKOVIC (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
  • Mr Jonathas Jose SILVA DA SILVEIRA (Brazil)
  • Mr François Felix GANDJI MOSSI (Cameroon)
  • Ms Yuqiong DENG (China)
  • Mr Mohamed Awad Abdelhady ABDELAZIZ (Egypt)
  • Mr Harikumar BALAKRISHNAN NAIR (India)
  • Miss Dua'a Abdel Razzaq Odeh AL-DALAHMEH (Jordan)
  • Mr Geoffrey Oduor ODERO (Kenya)
  • Miss Viengphet VANSILALOM (Lao People's Democratic Republic)
  • Mr LordErnest Pappy BENJAMIN (Liberia)
  • Mr Hussain Bin TAHIR (Malaysia)
  • Mrs Antonia Augusto Sabonete VAZ TOMBOLANE (Mozambique)
  • Mrs Tin Tin AUNG (Myanmar)
  • Mr Arun G C (Nepal)
  • Mr Ildephonse NIRAGIRE (Rwanda)
  • Mr Marcus Leontus RICHARDS (Saint Vincent and the Grenadines)
  • Mr Thembelani Theophilus PONGOLO (South Africa)
  • Mrs Harshadhi Chamari KANNANGARA (Sri Lanka)
  • Miss Sawsan Abdelgadir AWAD ABDELAZIZ (Sudan)
  • Miss Kulwadee WIWATSAWATDINON (Thailand)
  • Ms Tugba ADIGUZEL KARGIN (Turkey)
  • Mrs Yuliia HLUKHONETS (Ukraine)




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