Disseminating R-SAT – COLEACP’s Rapid SPS Assessment Tool

Competent authorities of six priority countries

On 22 and 29 April, COLEACP’s new Rapid SPS Assessment Tool (R-SAT) was presented in English and French to competent authorities of the six priority countries where it will soon be applied: Suriname, Uganda and Zimbabwe; Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire and Senegal.

A presentation of the tool was followed by discussions. The planning for its implementation in the six pilot countries will be discussed with each country individually, including selection of the value chain that will be the focus of each assessment; the appointment of a national contact point for the project; and the composition of a public–private Technical Working Group.

STDF Working Group

And on 19 May COLEACP presented R-SAT to a Working Group of the Standards and Trade Development Facility (STDF), which provided an opportunity to share the new tool and receive feedback on the concept and mechanism from the STDF Working Group.

Following an introduction from COLEACP General Delegate Jeremy Knops, R-SAT was presented by Chagema Kedera, Coordinator of the NExT Kenya Programme and Babacar Samb, COLEACP Expert. The meeting was moderated by Melvin Spreij, Head, STDF Secretariat.

Action plans based on a shared strategic vision

R-SAT is designed as a practical, step-by-step guide to help competent authorities work together with private sector stakeholders to conduct a rapid assessment of the current status and functioning of SPS systems. Bringing public and private sectors together helps to develop (and later monitor) priority action plans that are based on a common strategic vision. The tool is generally applied to just one or two priority value chains, but may provide outputs that can be applied to other sectors.

R-SAT does not replace existing dedicated food safety and plant health assessment tools, but is complementary to them. It enables a rapid preliminary assessment and generates information that can subsequently be fed into more in-depth evaluations, or shared with other partners.

This activity is supported by the Fit For Market SPS programme, implemented by COLEACP within the Framework of Development Cooperation between the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS) and the European Union.