Start Date

Monday, July 10, 2017

End Date

Upon approval.


Pacific Island Countries and Territories

1.     In October 2016, the STDF Working Group approved a Project Preparation Grant (PPG) application, submitted by the Land Resources Division (LRD) of the Pacific Community (SPC), to develop a project to establish an SPS Centre of Excellence for the benefit of Pacific Island countries and territories (PICTs). The PPG request was supported by National Plant Protection Organizations (NPPOs) from Tonga, Palau and Niue. In September 2015, the members of the Regional Organization of the Pacific Plant Protection Organization (PPPO)/RTMPP2, which included heads of quarantine and plant protection organizations from 22 PICTs, government ministries, development partners, research collaborators, international agencies such as FAO, and representatives from Australia, New Zealand and the USA, endorsed the PPG request.

2.     The Pacific Community (SPC) is the principal scientific and technical organization in the Pacific region. It is an international non-profit development organization, owned and governed by its 26 country and territory members. Its mission is to work for the well-being of Pacific people through the effective and innovative application of science and knowledge, guided by a deep understanding of Pacific Island contexts and cultures. The SPC seeks to contribute to three development goals: (i) Pacific people benefit from sustainable economic development; (ii) Pacific communities are empowered and resilient; and (iii) Pacific people reach their potential and live long and healthy lives. Under the first objective, the SPC seeks to "Improve pathways to international markets by facilitating the mobility of learners and workers, assisting private enterprises to access international markets, and providing support to PICTs to improve their capacity to meet phytosanitary and biosecurity standards to safeguard trade". The SPC's strategic direction is set out in the Pacific Community Strategic Plan 2016–2020.1

3.     Within SPC, the LRD is responsible, among others for assisting PICTs to strengthen their sanitary and phytosanitary capacity. Currently, LRD also serves as the Secretariat for the Pacific Plant Protection Organization (PPPO), which is recognized as the Regional Plant Protection Organization under the IPPC.

4.     The Pacific Island region comprises 22 countries and territories, which are diverse in geography, population size, culture and economy. Most of the PICTs are considered as Small Island Developing States with five (Kiribati, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu and Vanuatu) classified as Least Developed Countries (LDCs).

5.     Improving food security and facilitating trade relationships, are recognized as essential to promoting sustainable economic growth and stability in the region, however constrained by the limited capacity to manage SPS risks. The unique natural environment and importance of tourism, and linked to it the movement of goods and people further increases the need to adequately manage SPS conditions. Many PICTS have benefitted over the years from various donor-supported national and regional programmes, which one or the other way focused on food systems development and trade promotion, including some support for SPS capacity building. While these programmes have helped in increasing aspects of SPS capacity (such as enhanced SPS awareness, improved surveillance capacity) and market access for certain products, many of the countries continue to face SPS problems and inadequate capacity to comply with SPS requirements in order to take advantage of market access opportunities.

6.     The Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations (PACER Plus) is a trade and economic integration agreement that aims to create jobs, raise standards of living and encourage sustainable economic development in the Pacific region.2 PACER Plus is expected to create a more predictable trading environment and more consistent and transparent rules throughout the region, including on SPS measures, technical barriers to trade and customs procedures.

7.     Both individual PICTs and the SPC would benefit from additional support to supplement and enhance the SPS services currently offered, promote a collaborative regional approach to building and managing SPS capacity, and enhance the longer-term sustainability of SPS-related interventions. A regional SPS Service Support Platform could serve as the collaborative platform to enable members of PICTs to strengthen their SPS capacity, share their experiences and resources more effectively, identify new collaborative and regional approaches addressing inter alia SPS capacity building, build research and work programmes and improve dialogue and collaboration with diverse stakeholders. Efforts to develop SPS capacity in the region and to develop a regional SPS Service Support Platform need to build on and complement PACER Plus.


8.     This Project Preparation Grant (PPG), requested by the Pacific Community (SPC), responds to a request from its member countries to undertake a scoping study for the establishment of an SPS Centre of Excellence or SPS Service Support Platform for the Pacific Region. This scoping study will analyse and propose options and recommendations on all aspects of the establishment and operation of this centre/platform including related to its mandate, scope, name, legal identity, operations, budget/financial requirements, sustainability, etc.

9.     This document sets out the Terms of Reference (TORs) for the implementation of the PPG, addressing the recommendations of the STDF Working Group, and clarifying the scope of work to be carried out under the PPG. The STDF will engage an International Consultant/Company to implement the PPG in close collaboration the Pacific Community.

10.     The PPG will be used to:

i.    Conduct desk research and consult a wide range of stakeholders to carry out a detailed analysis of options and requirements to establish an SPS Service Support Platform for PICTs at the Pacific Community, or in other partner organizations (i.e. the scoping study). This will include detailed inputs and feedback from beneficiary countries (i.e. PICTs) and other stakeholders (including Australia, New Zealand, international/regional organizations, etc.) with a potential interest/role in the SPS Service Support Platform;

ii.    Based on the aforementioned consultations, research and analysis, develop a complete proposal for a project to establish a regional SPS Service Support Platform at the Pacific Community, or in other partner organizations.

Purpose of PPG

11.     SPC will provide support to the International Consultant / Company contracted to implement this PPG, in collaboration with SPC's key partners.

12.     SPC will work with STDF to select the International Consultant / Company to support implementation of this PPG (based on a short-list provided by the STDF). A profile of the eligibility criteria for the International Consultant/Company is provided in Appendix 1. The STDF Secretariat will contract the selected International Consultant/Company.

13.     SPC will ensure that all relevant stakeholders in PICTs, including government authorities, the private sector and universities, are informed about this PPG and invited to provide their views and observations on the SPS Service Support Platform.

14.    SPC shall deliver the following outputs:

i.     Summary report of the stakeholder workshop on the establishment of an SPS Service Support Platform (see below).

Role of the SPC

15.     SPC will carry out the following tasks during implementation of the PPG:

i.    Collect and systematically compile relevant reports and documents so they can be used by the International Consultant/Company.

ii.    Enable the International Consultant/Company to successfully deliver on his/her Terms of Reference, including support to schedule, organize and report on discussions at meetings.

iii.    Identify and inform relevant stakeholders in PICTs about this PPG and actively seek their buy-in, views and engagement by way of organized workshops.

iv.    Organize, in collaboration with the International Consultant/Company, a stakeholder workshop to: (i) discuss and validate the findings and recommendations of research and interviews carried out under the PPG in relation to the establishment of a SPS service support platform; and (ii) discuss and agree on the main components of a draft project proposal for the establishment of a Service Support Platform. This will include preparation of the workshop agenda, distribution of invitations and logistics for the workshop, preparation and distribution of substantive documents in advance of the event, drafting a summary report of the workshop including key comments and feedback received, etc. This meeting may be organized back-to-back with another meeting organized by SPC.

v.    Provide regular updates to the STDF Secretariat on progress made in implementation of the PPG, any challenges encountered and solutions identified.

vi.    Obtain letters of support for the resulting project proposal from key public and private sector stakeholders. As appropriate, these letters should include a clear expression of support for the proposed project, and demonstrate clear commitment to take actions needed to ensure the success and sustainability of the SPS Service Support Platform.

Key Tasks for the SPC

16.     Under the overall supervision of SPC and in close collaboration with STDF, the International Consultant/Company will carry out desk research, interviews and analysis, in order to provide support for the development and creation of an SPS Service Support Platform for PICTs.

17.     The profile for the International Consultant / Company is provided in Appendix 1. Based on the agreement of the STDF Secretariat, the International Consultant / Company may sub-contract some specific expertise required to implement these TORs, as necessary.

18.     The International Consultant/Company shall deliver the following outputs:

i.     Draft mid-term report on initial options and requirements to establish an SPS Service Support Platform.

ii.   Final report (scoping study) on the options, recommendations and requirements to establish an SPS Service Support Platform documenting the findings of interviews, desk research and analysis, and including a list of stakeholders consulted.

iii.   Project proposal (including a draft business plan) for the establishment of an SPS Service Support Platform.

Role of Kalang

19.    Kalang will carry out the following tasks:

i.    Desk research and consultations on the role, structure and operation of similar SPS Centres of Excellence elsewhere – particularly the Centre of Phytosanitary Excellence (COPE) for East Africa, established under the leadership of Kenya's Plant Health Inspection Service and with support from an STDF project (STDF/PG/171)3 – to learn from their experiences and any challenges faced including with regard to sustainability. This should include attention to consider experiences and lessons related to demand for services, scope and mandate, resources, scale, sustainability, etc. It should also include a review of relevant documents produced under past and ongoing SPS-related projects (including but not limited to the following) to identify experiences and lessons of relevance to the SPS Service Support Platform, as well as opportunities for synergies and linkages:

  • AusAID-funded Pacific Horticultural and Agricultural Market Access (PHAMA) programme, which has supported six PICTs.4

  • EU-funded Strengthening Pacific Economic Integration through Trade (SPEITT) programme, targeted at ACP countries, particularly its Increasing Agriculture Commodity Trade (IACT) component (which ended in February 2016).5

  • STDF-funded project to apply the IPPC's Phytosanitary Capacity Evaluation (PCE) Tool in the Pacific Region.6

  • Consultations with members of the Council of Regional Organisations in the Pacific (CROP), which brings together several regional inter-governmental agencies and other relevant stakeholders.

ii.    Review any elements related to SPS capacity building within the PACER Plus and EPA negotiations, as well as in DTIS reports for Least Developed Countries (LDC) in the region (i.e. Kiribati, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu and Vanuatu).

iii.    Analyse and identify opportunities for linkages and synergies with past/ongoing regional work on biosecurity, food safety, animal/plant health and trade facilitation, including any relevant existing networks in the region. This should include analysis of past and ongoing relevant work (addressing biosecurity, food safety, animal/plant health, fisheries, environment, trade facilitation, etc.) including work on biosecurity legal and operational frameworks carried out under the PACER-regional trade facilitation programme and the EU- PACREIP.

iv.     Hold in-depth discussions regarding the scope, role, services and operation of the SPS Service Support Platform with representatives of relevant stakeholders. Stakeholders to be consulted include the following:

  • Staff of the SPC including from the Biosecurity and Trade Services team, the Animal Health and Production team, the Plant Health team, FAME (Aquatic & Marine).

  • Government authorities responsible for agriculture, food safety animal and plant health, biosecurity, trade, foreign affairs, etc. in PICTs.

  • The private sector including national industry bodies (e.g. Industry Working Groups, Market Access Working Groups, existing associations and various councils)

  • Universities and tertiary training institutions (e.g. University of the South Pacific, Fiji National University, PNG, Massey, Victoria, Wellington, Biosecurity NZ etc)

  • International organizations (FAO, Codex, IPPC, OIE, WorldBank, ITC, etc.)

  • Donors (Australia's Department of Agriculture and Water Resources (DAWR), Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), Australia's Aid Programme (AusAid), European Union, Ministry of Primary Industries of New Zealand (MPINZ), as well as staff involved in relevant ongoing projects (PHAMA, EDES, etc.).

  • Regional organizations, including the APPPC, Pacific Plant Protection Organization (PPPO)/RTMPP, and any other relevant stakeholders.

v.    While the aim is to have as many face-to-face meetings as possible, in view of distances and
budgetary limitations, some consultations may need to take place by video/phone/Skype. There may be opportunities to organize missions back-to-back with already planned regional meetings to facilitate consultations. A survey could also be envisaged.

vi.    Based on desk research, interviews and consultations, consider, propose and document options to establish and operationalize an SPS Service Support Platform for PICTs with attention to the following aspects (including attention to the pros and cons of different options, as relevant):


  • Mission, mandate and name of the SPS Service Support Platform

  • Scope of the SPS Service Support Platform (including its coverage of food safety, animal and/or plant health and fisheries matters)

  • Role and responsibilities of the SPS Service Support Platform, including services to be provided, such as:

a)  SPS capacity building and training on diverse topics including risk assessment, surveillance, surveys, disease/pest free production areas or zones, notification obligations, bilateral SPS negotiations, market access submissions, etc..

b)  Development and implementation of new approaches to design and deliver regional training such as collaboration with qualified tertiary and vocational institutions, SPS officials work/study exchange (involving PICTs, SPC, Australia and New Zealand), mentoring, development of a scholarship programme, access to online elearning networks etc.

c)  Development and implementation of collaborative regional approaches and strategies to SPS capacity building, risk analysis, risk management, research on SPS risks, diagnostics, surveillance, incursion response, etc.

d)  Facilitate and improve dialogue on SPS technical and policy issues among relevant government authorities and with the private sector to promote regional positions and enhance participation in international standard-setting bodies (Codex, IPPC, OIE).

  • Expected demand for the range of possible services to be offered by the SPS Service Support Platform from government authorities in PICTs, the private sector, academia, etc. This analysis should consider economies of scale and the expected number of users/clients across the region.
  •  Institutional set-up, legal structure, governance, operational and decision-making structure for the SPS Service Support Platform including attention to its legal status, memorandum and articles of association, human resource requirements, specific roles, inputs and contributions, sustainability expected of PICTs and any other relevant stakeholders.

  • Budget and financial management, including a thorough business plan with details on the resource requirements, possible pricing structure for services to be provided, options for cost-recovery and/or cost-sharing (including options for PICTs and other developed country members of SPC to provide support) financial sustainability, etc.

  • Opportunities to develop public-private partnerships to support the implementation/delivery of particular functions or services of the Service Support Platform, and enhance its sustainability.

  • Linkages to other relevant programmes and projects to manage animal diseases and/or plant pests that have potential to significantly affect food security, market access and/or sustainable economic development in the Pacific, such as the FAO/OIE regional programme under the Global Framework for the progressive control of Transboundary Animal Diseases (GF-TADs) in addition to paravet training programmes.

  • Opportunities for technical partners of the PPPO and/or other regional bodies to take up competencies in which they have expertise.

vii.     Based on the findings of the preceding deskwork, interviews and consultations, draft a project proposal for the establishment of an SPS Service Support Platform for PICTs. This proposal should:

  • Clearly identify and map out linkages, synergies and complementarities to related activities and projects, supported by the government, donors and development partners.

  • Explain how experiences from other relevant initiatives (particularly the Regional COE for East Africa) have been reflected.

  • Clearly elaborate the purpose, expected outcomes, outputs and activities of the proposed project, based on a coherent logical framework. The logical framework should include indicators to measure performance, sources of verification and any key assumptions.

  • Clearly identify the roles and responsibilities of all concerned public and private stakeholders, and outline a practical mechanism for project implementation and management.

  • Include a detailed estimate of the budget required to implement the proposed project and, where possible, identify possible donors and/or private sector support for the resulting project over a medium (5-10 years) and long term (10-20 years) budgetary projection.

  • Consider crosscutting issues related to gender, disability and environmental aspects affecting the value chain.

  • Include a detailed work plan and timetable for implementation over a medium and long-term period.

  • Identify and assess the possible risks and challenges faced in the proposed project, as well as risk mitigation strategies to ensure its success and sustainability.

Key Tasks for Kalang

20.     The planned starting date is July 2017. Work under this PPG is expected to take approximately nine months to complete. The International Consultant/ Company will prepare a timetable with key deliverables, based on discussions with SPC, following signature of the Contract.