Project/Service

A. General Information

1. Title

Exchange electronic phytosanitary certificates (ePhytos) between Korea and the USA.

2. Status of the project/service
Operating
3. Implementation period of the project/service:
From
May 2021
To
Present
5. Geographical coverage
Bilateral: Republic of Korea and the USA
6. Participating agencies/entities of the project/service:
a. Development stage
Lead agencies/entities
International Plant Protection Convention Secretariat
Other participating agencies/entities
--
b. Operational stage
Lead agencies/entities (op)
International Plant Protection Convention Secretariat
Other participating agencies/entities (op)
--
7. Main stakeholders/beneficiaries of the project/services
Traders (big enterprises)
Traders (SMEs)
Customs brokers
Customs
8. Business process category of the project/service
Regulatory/official control

B. Lessons Learned

9. Summary description of the project/service
a. Objective(s)

The Animal and Plant Quarantine Agency (APQA) of the Republic of Korea started a new digital operation to exchange electronic phytosanitary certificates (ePhytos) developed by the Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC). The Republic of Korea will replace paper phytosanitary certificates exchanged with the United States Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) with ePhytos for all plant products traded with the United States of America.

When importers apply phytosanitary import inspection through Customs single window system, they can click “ePhyto” and put ePhyto numbers. This info is automatically transferred to APQA system which is connected to the IPPC hub to retrieve the ePhyto. If exporters want to use ePhyto, after export inspection relevant information is filled in the National system and ePhyto is transferred to the hub upon approval of the relevant senior staff.

b. Business need for the project/service (background)

To face the challenges deriving from the use of paper certificates (paper certificates can be costly, are logistically complicated and difficult to protect against fraud).

c. Business process covered*

Exchange of electronic Phytosanitary Certificates  

d. Overall architecture and functionalities*

The national developed systems are used to exchange ePhyto data via the HUB (https://www.ephytoexchange.org/landing/hub/index.html)

The HUB is a centralized system to facilitate exchange of ePhytos between NPPOs with a set of prescribed rules of connection and defined structure/codes/terms for the XML message.

Use of the Hub is voluntary

The Hub is a single, multilateral system

The Hub will be available 24/7 (secure and monitored)

No information (messages, transactions) should be lost

There is a single exchange protocol

The IPPC determines the version of UN/CEFACT schema

Participating countries will require a National System to exchange ePhyto through the Hub or use the Generic system

For more detail refer to the link: https://assets.ippc.int/static/media/files/publication/en/2016/03/A_Global_ePhyto_Feasibility_Study.pdf

 

1

e. Relevant document/figure
--
10. Documents and data exchanged via the project/service

Exchange of electronic Phytosanitary Certificates  

11. Data models/databases, proprietary solutions, hybrid approaches
--
12. Main challenges faced during the project/service
--
13. Lessons learned from the project/service
--
14. Main benefit(s) of the project/service
Enhanced regulatory compliance*
Transaction Cost savings*
Transaction Time savings
Simplified process
14A. Elaborations/detailed description on benefits gained:

More efficient certification process

Reduced fraud

Transparency

15. Technical/financial/capacity building/other assistance
--
16. Future plan for expansion of the project and service

Korea itends to gradually extend implementation of Epyhto with a number of countries, including Generic ePhyto National System (GeNS) countries (Uganda, Sri Lanka and Guatemala).

17. Other information or relevant references on the project and service

Standards

Authentication of systems that contact the hub through X.509 certificates

Sender identity verified through X.509 certificates

Single Web Services Description Language (WSDL)

UN/CEFACT schema v12B

Exchange protocol is Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) over HTTPS

Retrieving messages from the hub will be through a push or pull method.

For more details refer to the link: https://www.ephytoexchange.org/landing/hub/index.html

https://www.ephytoexchange.org/landing/harmonization/index.html

https://www.ephytoexchange.org/landing/hub/index.html

18. Relevant document regarding the project/service
--

C. Relevant Standards

20. Electronic message standard
20A. Electronic message standard supporting the project/service:
EDI:
- UNEDIFACT
20B. Type of standard for electronic message applied for the project/service
International standard
21. Technical communication standard
21A. Technical communication standard supporting the project/service
N/A
21B. Type of technical communication standard applied for the project/service
--
22. Security-related standards*
22A. Security-related standard supporting the project/service
--
22B. Type of security-related standard applied for the project/service
--
23. Other Technical Information
23A. Interface developed for data exchange with an internal system
--
23B. Other technical implementation information
--