The lack of institutional accreditation body in the country has hindered access of goods and services to other countries of the world, the Minister of State for Industry Trade and Investment, Hajia Aisha Abubakar has said.
Abubakar at the opening ceremony of the 7th African Accreditation Cooperation (AFRAC) hosted by the Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON) in Abuja said the establishment of a national accreditation body in the country would boost the access of goods and services of small scale to other countries.
The establishment of a well-functional national accreditation body would provide the requisite infrastructure to support the growth of the over 37 million Micro, Small and medium Enterprises in the country by enhancing their productive capacities and production processes.
She explained that the establishment of the body would guarantee speedy economic development of the country given the fact that SMEs form the bedrock of the economic development of most countries.
AFRAC Chairman, Mr Ron Josias believed that the establishment of a institutionalised accreditation body in Nigeria would enable the country to deal with the threat of withdrawal of accreditation services for political and economic reasons by developed economies.
He opined that it would provide Nigeria with the required platform to negotiate Mutual Recognition Agreements (MRAs) among governments for mutual acceptance of test, inspection and certification agreements that would help save time and money for both exporters and importers.
The 5-day meeting brought together members from more than 10 countries including Nigeria, Tunisia, Botswana, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya Mauritius and South Africa with Germany among others in attendance.
The African Accreditation Cooperation (AFRAC) is a cooperation of accreditation bodies, sub-regional accreditation cooperation and stakeholders whose objective is to facilitate trade and contribute to the protection of health, safety and the environment, in Africa and thereby improve Africa’s competitiveness.