The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS), Office of Capacity Building and Development (OCBD) seeks to strengthen and further the technical assistance to the West Africa region to increase governmental capacity to meet international phytosanitary standards.
The project aims to provide teaching to the National Plant Protection Officers (or their delegates) in strong collaboration with Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and other regional stakeholders.
This project will enable the ability of ECOWAS countries to meet some of the objectives laid out in the action plan to improve regional phytosanitary systems by supporting international collaboration between countries as well as between ECOWAS and member countries. This project enhances the ability for West Africa to work collectively as a region to harmonize standards, procedures to better facilitate trade by initiating technical working groups among other activities. The selected recipient will work with ECOWAS, NPPOs and USDA/FAS to build the capacity of ECOWAS member states to meet international phytosanitary standards and better harmonize and recognize phytosanitary systems within the region. These efforts will also help West African countries achieve their objectives under the African Continental Free Trade Area and contributions to the African Union’s Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Policy Framework for Africa.
USDA/FAS is seeking partners with whom to collaborate throughout the West Africa region. Objectives focused on improving the region’s phytosanitary systems are:
- Successfully provide regional assistance to ECOWAS countries to accomplish objectives and activities laid out in the ECOWAS Regional Action Plan,
- Provide teaching to foreign governments to enable their capacity to harmonize import and export inspection procedures and protocols in West Africa, and
- Improve coordination for regional harmonization and compliance with international standards and regional participation in setting international standards.
- Develop guidance documents and other communication materials on improving regional phytosanitary systems that can be shared widely across the continent.
The Priority activities/deliverables are to conduct at least three regional activities with ECOWAS to include:
- Training of NPPOs on identification, detection, pest surveillance and response to invasive pests
- Training on risk-based inspections and phytosanitary certification
- Training on conducting quarantine treatments and application, including instruction on conducting treatments safely
- Strengthening the infrastructure of the NPPOs
- Strengthening information sharing among the NPPOs within the region
- Developing standard operational procedures (SOPs) for phytosanitary measures (or building upon possible current efforts in region or within the international community).
- Work closely with USDA APHIS colleagues to help facilitate technical exchanges of African experts to travel to the US to learn about harmonization of phytosanitary practices, including inspection and other regulatory border activities, and improved food security and agricultural resilience from invasive pests. Activities would be conducted on a regional basis through the Africa regional plant protection organization, Inter-African Phytosanitary Council (AU/IAPSC).
- Provide technical trainings on science-based systems to gather analyze and disseminate information on the presence and prevalence of high-risk diseases, pests, or food safety hazards in the region.
- Provide technical assistance to conduct a survey to identify institutional gaps and pinpoint in adequacies that hinder the development of establishing an Africa NPPO plant health safeguarding capacity building program.
- Monitoring the program, evaluating progress in achieving objectives, and reporting outcomes.
- Estimated Award Amount: Up to $350,000 total, subject to the availability of funding
- Period of Performance: 24 months
- Projected Period of Performance Start Date(s): September 1, 2020
- Projected Period of Performance End Date(s): August 31, 2022
Eligible Applicants: State cooperative institutions or other colleges and universities in the United States.
- All applicants must have an active registration in the SAM database – pending or expired registrants are not eligible. This requirement must be met by the closing date of the announcement and will not be waived.