2nd International Convention on Sustainable Trade and Standards

The Brazilian Institute of Metrology, Quality and Technology (Inmetro), the Federation of Industries of the State of Rio de Janeiro (Firjan) and the United Nations Forum on Sustainability Standards (UNFSS) 

proudly organizes the

2nd International Convention on Sustainable Trade and Standards
Date: 16-18th of September 2019,
Venue: Casa Firjan, Rua Guilhermina Guinle, 211
City: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Convention Page


The 2nd ICSTS aims to advance multi-stakeholder dialogues on Voluntary Sustainability Standards (VSS) as an avenue to improve the transparency of VSS, foster greater partnerships between trading partners towards achieving sustainable global value chains, and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

The Convention will touch on several key topics namely,

  • the challenges of standards in global value chains
  • increasing the transparency of VSS
  • the role of National VSS Platforms to foster collaborative sustainability standards framework
  • approaches towards mutual recognition of VSS

The Convention will also feature the launch of the first Brazilian-context VSS research publication, ‘The Brazilian VSS Story’ which covers four of Brazil’s important product groups, i) leather, ii) fruits, iii) nuts and, iv) vegetable oils such as andiroba, babaçú, carnaúba and copaíba, whose path and good practices project the epitome of sustainable global value chains.

To participate, please visit https://unfss.org/icsts2rio/.
Download the Concept Note.

See you in Rio!

Background of the Convention
The first international multi-stakeholder dialogue solely focused on VSS can be dated back from the ‘International Conference on Sustainable Trade and Resource Efficiency in Supply Chains’ in June 2017. This Conference was organized by the International Trade Centre (ITC) and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), in collaboration with the China Association for Standardization (CAS) which was held at the Qingdao Forum on International Standards. The event received tremendous recognition upholding the significance of VSS as a tool for sustainable development and market access. The event represents the first technical assistance training that UNFSS embarked on, as well as marking the launch of the China VSS National Platform.

In an effort to strengthen the networks between the National Platforms, the Quality Council of India (QCI), the convening body of the India National Platform on Private Sustainability Standards (India PSS Platform), with the support of the United Nations Forum on Sustainability Standards (UNFSS), originated the 1st International Convention on Sustainable Trade and Standards (ICSTS). The event was the first of its kind — a multi-stakeholder convention dedicated solely to the practicalities of leveraging trade, global value chains, standards and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This was also an event that marked the first Declaration of Cooperation on Sustainability Standards between the National Platforms’ signed by INMETRO, Quality Council of India and the Mexican Ministry of Economy on an agreement of 9 action points towards achieving the 2030 SDGs collectively.

In light of the declaration, the 2nd ICSTS will complement thought leaders to bridge the gap between debates on sustainable supply chains and standards, and the challenges and opportunities these standards pose on international trade, as well as referencing the efforts with the UN SDGs. The convention intends to increase multi-stakeholder dialogue, improve the transparency of VSS and foster closer international connection to achieve sustainable global value chains.

Who should participate?
This is a public convention open to all societies, institutions, the private sectors, academia and all others who are interested on dialogues related to trade, sustainability standards and global value chains, coming together with international representatives, namely the Steering Committee members of the UNFSS, which include the UNCTAD, ITC, UNIDO, FAO and UN Environment. We highly encourage the participation of representatives from high-level governmental and intergovernmental officials, other National Platforms, members of MERCOSUR, LAIA, Brazilian partners from South America, members of state governments, international organizations, non-profit organizations/ NGOs, stakeholders from international and national businesses, policy-makers, research institutions and think-tanks, standards organizations & alliances, national standardization bodies, major industry associations from around the world, producers and SMEs who form different parts of value chains, smallholders, civil society and major group stakeholders, consumer protection associations, among others.

Related links:


The 2nd ICSTS is jointly organized by:





The United Nations Forum on Sustainability Standards (UNFSS) is a joint initiative of 5 UN Agencies (FAO, ITC, UNCTAD, UN Environment and UNIDO) that seeks to address these challenges. It is a demand-driven forum for intergovernmental actors to communicate among each other and engage with key target groups (producers, traders, consumers, standard-setters, certification-bodies, trade diplomats, relevant NGOs and researchers) to address their information needs and influence concerned stakeholders. It aims to provide impartial information, analysis, and discussions on VSS and their potential contribution to facilitate market access, strengthen public goods and achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Most importantly, the UNFSS focuses on potential trade or development obstacles VSS may create, with particular emphasis on their impact on SMEs and less developed countries.

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