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First meeting of Asian working group of the GOMA project held in Mumbai

Nineteen participants from the public and private sectors in 15 Asian countries/regions, as well as six supranational observers gathered at the Asian Working Group meeting of the Global Market Access project (GOMA) in Mumbai, India on 9-10 December 2010.



This first meeting of the Working Group for Cooperation on Organic Labeling and Trade for Asia follows up on the workshop in May 2010 in Shanghai, aiming to achieve progress on elements of a framework for cooperation on organic labeling and trade for East, South-East and South Asia. The Agricultural and Processed Foods Export Development Authority (APEDA) and International Center for Competence on Organic Agriculture (ICCOA) were the sponsors of this meeting.

The GOMA Steering Committee first reported on its work on the Asia initiative after the GOMA Shanghai workshop in May 2010. This included commissioning and overseeing preparation of technical studies, preparing a proposal for technical, protocol and funding requirements for the regional standards, and planning of this Working Group meeting.

A mapping concept  for the framework for cooperation and main elements for recognition among countries were presented. They are standards for organic production and processing, requirements for organic certification, and control (later changed to “supervision”) of certification, cooperation on certification and accreditation. It was noted that the cooperation framework will facilitate regional trade and also enable the Asia Region to negotiate as a block for recognition with other major importing countries and regions such as the US and European Union.

Source: First meeting of Asian Working Group held in Mumbai, posted by Zhenye Zhang on January 19, 2011, The GOMA homepage

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