The Biosecurity Continuum and Trade: Pre-border Operations



Pre-border aspects of the biosecurity continuum associated with trade are internal arrangements of the NPPO that address import and export needs of the country. In most countries, these programmes are evolving from historically protectionist designs to a post-SPS world where restrictions must be technically justified and trade arrangements follow principles, concepts, and internationally agreed guidelines. The adaptation begins with the structure of legal authority, including laws, regulations, and policies that are consistent with the international framework created by the SPS Agreement and the IPPC. Internally, NPPOs adjust their programmatic functions to focus more on analysis as a central aspect of decision making and collaborating both domestically and internationally to share critical information. Efforts toward transparency and evidence-based judgments on the level of pest risk and the strength of measures needed to achieve an appropriate level of protection are replacing the “when in doubt, keep it out” approach of the past. Important concepts and programmatic linkages in an SPS-consistent biosecurity system are highlighted. Variability across national systems due to differences in structure, authority, resources and priorities is increasingly mitigated by harmonization driven by the international regulatory framework of the SPS-IPPC. This evolutionary shift has likewise fostered a trend toward adopting safe trade as a constant objective over unpredictable programmes that are neither consistent for protection nor trade because they lack policy bases and analytical justifications. Considerably more care is therefore given to understanding different types of measures and being able to defend them as a result of their relationship to scientific evidence and accepted principles.


World Trade Organisation Trading Partner Contracting Parti Provisional Measure World Trade Organisation Member 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht (outside of the USA) 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Plant Health Science and TechnologyPlant Protection and Quarantine, APHIS, USDARaleighUSA
  2. 2.Pest Epidemiology and Risk Assessment LaboratoryPlant Protection and Quarantine, APHIS, USDARaleighUSA

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