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The Inter-American Coordinating Group in Plant Protection (hereinafter referred to as "the Group") is a group for coordination and cooperation in the field of plant protection, formalized in a Memorandum of Understanding signed by representatives of the Regional Plant Protection Organizations of the Americas on March 23, 1998.

Article I: Objective and Functions
The objective of the Group is to secure common and effective action to prevent the spread and introduction of pest of plants and plant products, and to promote appropriate measures for their control.
The group shall carry out the following functions:
  • Establish a forum for continental coordination in the development of phytosanitary standards and guidelines.
  • Facilitate trade through the promotion of the disciplines, principles and objectives of the WTO-SPS Agreement and the IPPC.
  • Serve as a mechanism for consultation and a channel for exchanging information and experience in plant protection matters of strategic importance to the Americas.
  • Identify and analyze important plant protection issues and consider strategies to strengthen plant protection in the Americas.
  • Promote the adoption of continental standards and guidelines on phytosanitary measures.
  • Identify the areas of technical cooperation necessary to fulfill its objectives.
Article II: Official Languages
The official languages of the Group shall be Spanish and English.
Article III: Composition
The Group shall be composed of the Regional Plant Protection Organizations (RPPOs) of the Americas.
Article IV: Organizational Structure
Steering Committee
The Steering Committee will be composed of one representative from each member RPPO. It will be coordinated by one of its members for two-year terms, on a rotational basis.
Working Group
Working Groups will be created as necessary, by the Steering Committee, and its members will be designated by the RPPO's
Technical Secretariat
The Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) will serve as a Secretariat for the Group.
Article V: Functions
The main functions of the Steering Committee will be to:
Propose strategies and work plans for the Group and encourage their RPPOs to participate in achieving the objectives of the Group
  • Facilitate the harmonization of continental phytosanitary standards and guidelines
  • Determine the need for special meetings.
  • Establish a revise rules and procedures for the Group
  • Assure that a records management system is established
  • Oversee the implementation of recommendations of the Group
The main functions of the Coordinator of the Steering Committee will be to:
Chair meetings of the Group
  • Serve as a contact point for other international organizations
  • Expedite and channel all correspondence resulting from meetings and ensure follow-up of agree actions
  • Maintain contact with the Technical Secretariat on all matters concerning the support which it can provide the Group
The main function of Working Groups will be to:
Examine important scientific and technical issues and develop proposals to strengthen plant protection in the Americas, including the drafting of standards
The main functions of the Technical Secretariat will be to:
  • Assist in keeping a record of the papers, debates and discussions and recommendations of the Meetings and general activities of the Group
  • Assist the Coordinator and the Steering Committee to define, develop and discuss technical issues
  • Organize meetings, in consultation with the Steering Committee and confirm the location, dates and logistical arrangements for meetings, with members of the Group and invited observers
  • Assist in the drafting, editing, publication and distribution of the reports of meetings
Article VI: Meetings
The Steering Committee will meet at least once a year; however, it may also meet on other occasions, as circumstances require.
  • The NPPOs of the continent are permitted to attend meetings of the Steering Committee and participate in discussions.
  • Any organization or individual may be invited as an observer to any meeting of the Group when the Steering Committee considers this desirable.
Article VII: Decision Making
  • Decisions will be made by consensus of the Steering Committee members, ad referendum of their RPPOs/NPPOs, according to their internal procedures.
  • Decisions will be communicated in writing, by the Technical Secretariat to the RPPO members, within two weeks of the decision being taken.
  • The RPPO members will be afforded ninety days to ratify such decisions. If no response is received by the Technical Secretariat within this time frame, the decisions will be considered to be ratified.
Article VIII: Work Plans
The Steering Committee will develop a two-year work plan with provision for mid term review.
Article IX: Rules and Procedures
The Group may adopt and amend by consensus, its own Rules and Procedures, according to the provisions of Art. VII.
Article X: Financial Responsibility
Each member will be responsible to cover the expenses of their representative(s) attending meetings or performing the activities required to carry out the work plan.
Article XI: Amendment of Constitution and By-Laws
Each member will be responsible to cover the expenses of their representative(s) attending meetings or performing the activities required to carry out the work plan.
Article XII: Withdrawal from the Group
An RPPO member may withdraw from the Group by means of a written notice to the Steering Committee providing six months notice.


Jorge Vega 
C.Comunidad Andina

Jorge I. Rosas 

Ralph Farnum 

Ian McDonell 

Juan José May 

Signed: June 24, 1999

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