First Annual Meeting of the Asian and Pacific Network for Testing of Agricultural Machinery (ANTAM) Laid the Groundwork for Harmonizing Regional Testing Codes and Procedures

 Concept Note
         List of Presentations

The 1st Annual Meeting of the Asian and Pacific Network for Testing of Agricultural Machinery (ANTAM) was held on 16-19 September in Beijing, China, in parallel with the 18th World Congress of CIGR and in collaboration with China Agricultural Machinery Testing Centre of the Ministry of Agriculture. Participants from 19 member States of UNESCAP, i.e. Bangladesh, China, Cambodia, France, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Republic of Korea, Russia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, the Philippines, Viet Nam, as well as representatives from relevant UN agencies and international organizations including ESCAP, FAO, OECD, UNIDO and ENAMA/ENTAM, and representatives of manufacturers, industry associations and farmers¡¯ organizations across the Asia-Pacific attended the meeting.

Mr. LI Weiguo, Director-General of the Department of Agricultural Mechanization of the Ministry of Agriculture, Mr. LIU Min, Director-General of China Agricultural Machinery Testing Centre of the Ministry of Agriculture, Dr. Ravi Ratnayake, Director of Trade and Investment Division of ESCAP, and Ms. Ms. Ismal Kumudini, Joint Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture of India, addressed the opening of the inaugural session.

Country representatives briefed the meeting of the current status of agricultural machinery testing in their respective countries and stressed the importance of testing in promoting sustainable agricultural mechanization. They further highlighted the need to make ANTAM operational, so as to to facilitate the harmonization of test codes and procedures across the region, assisting the countries in raising the capacity of agricultural machinery testing and the quality and performance of farm machinery and equipment produced, traded and used in the region.

Member countries reviewed and approved work plan of ANTAM for 2014-2015, and reached consensus on issues related to the operational structure of ANTAM. China and India were elected Chair and Vice-Chair of ANTAM for 2014-15, respectively, and China Agricultural Machinery Testing Centre was asked to serve as the Lead Focal Point for the same period.

Agreement was reached to rename the Steering Committee as ¡°Advisory Panel¡± and on the interim arrangement of establishing an independent Technical Reference Unit (TRU) to provide technical support and third-party objective check.

Member countries further agreed to nominate one or two experts for the Technical Working Group (TWG) of ANTAM by the end of October 2014, and test run on the a voluntary basis the ANTAM codes and procedures for tractors and knapsack sprayers to be developed by the TWG. The draft ANTAM test reports would be submitted to the 2nd annual meeting of ANTAM for review.

In light of limited financial resources, participants emphasized the necessity to solicit additional funds to sustain the operation of ANTAM particularly during the initial operation stage, and called for member countries to make additional contribution for CSAM to financially support its operation.

It was agreed that the 2nd Annual Meeting of ANTAM would be held in the second half of 2015.



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