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SGS Helps Raise the Game for Egyptian Trade Compliance

PCA NewslettersSeptember 19, 2023

In a significant development towards enhancing compliance, improving operational efficiency, and ensuring product safety, Egypt’s General Organization for Export and Import Control (GOEIC) has chosen SGS as its preferred partner for comprehensive training and certification. This partnership aims to empower GOEIC staff with essential knowledge and skills in ISO 14001, ISO 22000, the National Food Safety Authority (NFSA) of Egypt’s new decree number 2/2020, and ministerial decree number 991/2015.

The collaboration between the GOEIC and SGS underscores a shared commitment to elevating industry standards and regulatory compliance. Recognizing SGS's exceptional expertise and experience in providing top-tier training and certification services, the GOEIC has entrusted us with the responsibility of equipping its staff with insights into vital industry standards and regulatory updates.

Key areas of training

ISO 14001 Environmental Management System (EMS)

SGS provided GOEIC staff with comprehensive training, focused on the principles and best practices of environmental management. This training empowered participants to implement effective environmental management systems and contribute to sustainable practices within their respective roles.

ISO 22000 Food Safety Management System (FSMS)

In line with the growing importance of food safety, SGS has conducted training sessions to equip participants with the knowledge needed to ensure the safety and quality of food products along the supply chain.

Ministerial Decrees 991/2015 and 2/2020

GOEIC and NFSA staff are already trained by SGS on the provisions of these ministerial decrees, which cover key aspects of the inspection and certification processes including the electronic certification system. This training enabled GOEIC and NFSA staff to align their practices with industry standards and regulatory requirements.

As a testament to our dedication to quality and compliance, SGS has been selected as one of the certification bodies authorized to issue certificates of inspection in accordance with the decrees. This recognition underscores SGS's position as a trusted partner for organizations seeking reliable certification and inspection services.

The GOEIC/NFSA collaboration with SGS marks a significant step towards achieving higher levels of compliance, operational excellence, and safety in various sectors. By leveraging SGS's expertise in training and certification, the GOEIC and the NFSA are well-positioned to enhance their regulatory practices and contribute to the overall growth and sustainability of the industries they oversee. This partnership exemplifies the shared commitment to quality and safety that drives both the GOEIC and SGS in their respective fields.

What are GOEIC and NFSA?

The GOEIC and the NFSA are two sovereign entities responsible for controlling all imports and exports to and from Egypt. The GOEIC is responsible for all non-food shipments and the NFSA is in charge of all food shipments, auditing food safety and submitting all relevant licenses for food manufacturers in Egypt.

In the realm of international trade, regulatory bodies play a pivotal role in ensuring the quality, safety, and compliance of imported and exported goods. In Egypt, the GOEIC has historically held this responsibility, giving it an instrumental role in shaping trade practices. Over time it has evolved in response to changing demands and challenges, leading to the establishment of the NFSA.

The GOEIC era (pre-2016)

For decades, the GOEIC has been the central authority overseeing import and export activities in Egypt. Its mandate encompassed various sectors, with a focus on maintaining the integrity of Egypt's international trade operations. In 2015, a significant milestone was reached with the introduction of Decree Number 991/2015.

Decree Number 991/2015: a transformative step

The issuance of Decree Number 991/2015 marked a turning point in Egypt's trade landscape. This decree, meticulously designed and implemented by the GOEIC, was tailored to enhance the quality of imports. It focused on a select group of 25 commodities, necessitating the issuance of a certificate of inspection prior to loading, with select inspection bodies authorized to issue these certificates. SGS emerged as a notable partner, contributing to the decree's objective of bolstering the quality and safety of imported goods.

The emergence of NFSA (2017-2020)

In 2017, recognizing the paramount importance of food safety, the Egyptian government established the NFSA. This pivotal decision aimed to consolidate efforts in ensuring the safety and quality of food products entering and leaving Egypt. The NFSA was entrusted with the authority to regulate and oversee all matters pertaining to food safety.

NFSA's journey to full operations (2020-present)

Building upon its foundation, the NFSA commenced operations in 2020, assuming the responsibilities previously held by the GOEIC in the realm of food safety. This shift resulted in the coexistence of two distinct programs in Egypt's trade landscape: the EG71 GOEIC program for non-food products and the EG72 NFSA program encompassing all food products, both imports and exports.

The purpose of the conformity program in Egypt is to:

  • Improve the quality of imported products and help ensure that Egyptian consumers are getting safe and high-quality goods
  • Prevent fraud and counterfeits, protecting consumers from harm and helping to protect the Egyptian economy from losses
  • Maintain foreign currency and its resources, enabling better protection of Egypt's economic resources and ensuring that the country is getting the best possible value for its foreign currency

The transfer of authority from the GOEIC to the NFSA signifies a progressive shift towards specialized regulatory oversight. With the NFSA focusing exclusively on the critical domain of food safety, the collaborative efforts of regulatory bodies exemplified by SGS's continued involvement demonstrate Egypt's commitment to ensuring the safety, quality, and compliance of its international trade operations.

Learn more about Egypt – Conformity Assessment Services.

This article can also be found in our PCA Newsletter (Q3/2023) – which keeps you up to date with developments in technical barriers to trade and product conformity assessment. 

Read more PCA articles (Q3/2023)

You can read more articles in previous editions of our PCA Newsletter Library.

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