Trilateral cooperation with Italy and the European Union paves the way for Turkey’s implementation of the Rotterdam Convention

On 21 September 2017, Turkey deposited its instrument of ratification in New York, becoming the 159th Party to the Rotterdam Convention. On 20 December 2017, the Convention will enter into force for Turkey.

This positive step for human health and the environment has come about as a result of much work domestically within Turkey as well as through trilateral international cooperation between Turkey, Italy, and the European Union.

Between 2015 and 2017, several national training initiatives took place in Turkey within the framework of the “Technical Assistance Programme for the Implementation of Export and Import of Dangerous Chemicals Regulation”. This project is supported by the European Union and by the Italian Customs Authority and Monopolies Agency, in collaboration with the Turkish Ministry of Environment and Urbanization.

The main objective of this programme was to set in place the best scenario for sound implementation and enforcement of the obligations related to the Rotterdam Convention.

The ministries of Agriculture, Economy, Environment, Health, Trade and Labour, together with Customs Authority, were all involved in fruitful discussions around this key topic, taking into consideration that chemicals industries in Turkey employ more than 200,000 people in approximately 6,000 companies around the country in Adana, Ankara, Gaziantep, Istanbul, Izmir, Kocaeli and Sakarya.

In October 2017, a Turkish delegation will meet for two days with the Secretariat of the Rotterdam Convention in FAO Headquarters in Rome. The key provisions of the Convention will be introduced in order to initiate the journey for a smooth national implementation. Article 5 on final regulatory actions notifications, article 10 on importing responses and article 12 on export notification, will be extensively discussed as milestones of the PIC Procedure and of Information Exchange, the core business and driving force of this Convention.

Technical assistance activities in Turkey will be programmed for 2018 based on the results of the recommendations that will be presented at the end of these discussions by the Turkish delegation to the Secretariat.

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