Germany has donated almost €3 million ($3.2 million) to boost safe trade in developing and least-developed countries (LDCs).

The €2.85 million ($3.1 million) sum until 2025 will help such nations meet international food safety, animal and plant health standards.

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, World Trade Organization (WTO) director-general, thanked Germany for supporting developing countries in strengthening their compliance with sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) measures.

“When farmers are empowered to meet these standards, it improves access to global and regional markets, paving the way for increased sales and incomes. Enhanced SPS capacity also means more sustainable, resilient food systems, which contributes to food security at home and globally,” she said.

Germany’s contribution to the Standards and Trade Development Facility (STDF) will improve food safety systems by enhancing SPS capacity, reducing trade barriers and trade costs in developing countries.

STDF works on safe and inclusive trade. It was established by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the World Organisation for Animal Health, the World Bank Group, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the WTO.

Apply for grants in February
“More than ever, it is time to show that WTO members help each other to fulfil their obligations, strengthen their know-how and further develop their trade capacities,” said Bettina Waldmann, Germany’s Ambassador to the WTO.

Germany has given $34.8 million to various WTO trust funds since 2002, including more than $6.1 million to the STDF.

Developing countries and LDCs can apply to the STDF for project and project preparation grants. The next deadline for funding proposals is Feb. 24, 2023, and more information is available here. Submissions will be considered in June.

Funds of up to $50,000 are available for project preparation grants and $1 million for project grants.

Current projects include piloting a voluntary third party assurance (vTPA) program in Rwanda and Uganda to improve food safety in horticulture and fisheries and ensuring food safety in the pepper supply chain in Jamaica. 

Project preparation grants awaiting funding include prioritizing SPS investment in Bangladesh and reducing histamine in pole-and-line and hand line caught tuna in Indonesia.

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