NIGERIA – The federal government, through the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment with the support of the European Union (EU), and United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO), has earmark N2.65 billion for the establishment of a national quality infrastructure project(NQIP) in Nigeria.
EU and UNIDO support the government of Nigeria to establish a National Accreditation Body (NAB) empowered to issue certificates of conformity which will verify that management systems, product manufacturers, service providers and personnel have complied with best practice for quality, fitness for use and continued safety in operations that will ensure that buyers, users and consumers of products and services can pay for goods and services with confidence in the fact that their wellbeing is protected.
The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga, supported by the EU Ambassador to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Mr. Michel Arrion, and UNIDO Representative to Nigeria and West Africa, Dr. Patrick Kormawa, inaugurated the Accreditation Technical Steering Committee as an advisory body for NAB. The committee comprised 23 members drawn from the public/private sector and key consumer association.
While reading the terms of reference for the advisory body in Abuja, Aganga said, “the NQIP complements the government of Nigeria’s transformation agenda especially the Nigeria Industrial Revolution Plan which will transform Nigeria to an industrialised country by 2020.”
According to him, “Once the National Accreditation Body issues its certificates for a product, process or system in Nigeria, the product will be accepted in other countries around the world and for exporters, the risk of product rejection by international trade partners is minimised.”
Aganga added that the support for the establishment of NAB was under the auspices of the European Union funded N2.65 billion NQIP being implemented by UNIDO.
Responding, Arrion assured: “EU is committed to supporting Nigeria and West Africa in improving competitiveness and integration into the global non-oil economy.”
He said, “The success of this economic transformation as well as other governmental priorities of Nigeria is of utmost importance to the EU. We believe that if Nigeria succeeds, Africa will succeed.”
In his remarks, Kormawa disclosed that NAB was the first ever in Nigeria and the entire West Africa.
“UNIDO will bring in over 45 years of experience to support Nigeria develop its National Quality Infrastructure (NQI). I urge each of you to support this initiative which will significantly contribute to the attainment of Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development of Nigeria,” he said.