While a number of developing countries have excellent food security and veterinary and plant health services, others do not. For these organizations, the requirements of the SPS agreement pose a challenge to improve the health situation of their population, population and crops, which may be difficult for some to meet. As a result of this difficulty, the SPS agreement delayed all requirements, with the exception of transparency requirements (notification and creation of investigative bodies), until 1997 for developing countries and until 2000 for least developed countries. This means that these countries are not required to scientifically justify their health or plant health requirements before that date. Countries that need more time, for example. B to improve their veterinary services or fulfill specific obligations under the agreement, may ask the SPS Committee to grant them further delays. In adopting the WTO agreement, governments have agreed to be bound by the rules of all multilateral trade agreements attached to it, including the SPS agreement. In the event of a trade dispute, WTOs dispute resolution procedures (click here for an introduction, click here for more details) encourage the governments concerned to find a mutually acceptable bilateral solution through formal consultations. If governments are unable to resolve their dispute, they may choose to follow one of the different ways of resolving disputes, including good offices, conciliation, mediation and arbitration.
Another government may request the creation of an impartial body of trade experts to hear from all parties to the dispute and make recommendations. While the SPS agreement allows governments to maintain adequate health and plant health protection, it reduces the potential arbitrariness of decisions and promotes consistent decision-making. It requires that sanitary and plant health measures be applied for purposes other than ensuring food security and animal and plant health. In particular, the agreement clarifies the factors to be taken into account when assessing risk risk. Measures to ensure food security and the protection of animal and plant health should, where possible, be based on the analysis and evaluation of objective and accurate scientific data. Under the SPS agreement, the WTO sets limits on Member States` policy on food security (bacterial contaminants, pesticides, inspection and labelling) and animal and plant health (phyto-hygiene) with regard to pests and imported diseases. There are three standards bodies that set standards on which WTO members should base their SPS methods. According to Article 3, they are the Codex Alimentarius Commission (Codex), the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and the secretariat of the International Convention on the Protection of Plants (IPPC). Measures relating to environmental protection (with the exception of those mentioned above), consumer protection or animal welfare are not covered by the SPS agreement.