Modernizing Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures to Facilitate Trade in Agricultural and Food Products

Publication | May 2013

This project study was initiated by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) as part of the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) Transport and Trade Facilitation Strategy. Its objective is to identify areas for improvement in the administration and application of sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) regulations, procedures, and standards in the CAREC region.

It recommends a set of concerted, coordinated measures designed to improve and reduce delays in handling perishable goods in transit (and particularly at border crossing points), ensure that food is safe for consumers, and prevent the spread of pests and diseases among animals and plants. The study is based on an examination of SPS measures as applied in the People's Republic of China, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, and Uzbekistan.

The study involved a wide-ranging assessment of current procedures for animal and plant quarantine, veterinary inspection, food safety inspection, and risk analysis and assessment, assessing conformity with internationally accepted standards.


The top priorities for facilitating trade in relation to sanitary and phytosanitary issues are as follows:

  • Adoption of single window facilities to administer international trade;
  • Establishment of a robust policy base and regulatory infrastructure for risk-based controls to complete the transition from the former Soviet system;
  • Adoption of internationally recognized (Codex) food standards to replace complex and outdated set of State Standards of the former Soviet Union and sanitary and epidemiologic requirements as a principal means of reducing inspection- and testing-related delays; and
  • Coordination of risk-based controls (such as import requirements) with customs risk management systems.


  • Foreword
  • Abbreviations
  • Executive Summary
  • Introduction
  • Overview of SPS Measures in the CAREC Region
  • SPS-Related Issues in the CAREC Countries
  • Possible Modalities of Regional Cooperation in SPS
  • Conclusions and Recommendations
  • Next Steps
  • Appendixes