Each Pacific nation or territory should have a Biosecurity Act or equivalent. These acts detail the legislation around the importation of risk goods, import health standards, surveillance and prevention, pest management, response, compensation, risk profiling, biosecurity emergency protocols, enforcement etc. These protocols should be in line with the WTO Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Agreement.
The Biosecurity Act (or equivalent) provides a legal basis for excluding, eradicating and managing pests and diseases and unwanted organisms. Administrators of the Act should be given sufficient powers to ensure the Act is executed. The powers should include the ability to search goods and luggage entering into the country, prosecution of people that do not comply with the act (willingly or otherwise) and the ability to rapidly respond to incursions.
The Act should also place a general duty on all citizens to inform the ministry that enforces the Act of any organisms found that are not normally seen in the country the Act relates to.
The Biosecurity Acts for Fiji, Samoa, Kiribati, the Cook Islands, the Solomon Islands and New Zealand are provided as PDFs. The Country profiles tab of the FAO Legal Office website provides links to a number of other Pacific Nations’ Legislation. Links for each country’s Biosecurity Act (or equivalent) are found under the Environment Section of the FAO Legal Office website.
Joint Border Management System
New Zealand is developing a joint order management system. The system is a collaborative effort between the NZ Customs and the Ministry for Primary Industries featuring a single Trade Window computer system that will streamline border clearances and provide businesses with a by receiving all shipment details to a single window.