The development of a Regional QI Policy came out of the 10th European Development Fund Programme aimed at removing technical barriers to trade in the region, thereby increasing trade and international competitiveness of products and services with CARIFORUM states.
St. Prix stated that they were extremely pleased thus far with the attendance to the national consultations within the member states, as well as the participation and feedback, including this latest round in Barbados.
CROSQ Technical Officer – Standards, Fulgence St. Prix answering questions posed by stakeholders about the Draft Regional QI Policy
"We have achieved our objectives, which was to consult as wide a cross-section of the stakeholders as possible and the spirited discussion proved that they were indeed interested in the process and had a lot to offer." The document, he further explained, sets out the policy direction for setting up the QI framework and will enable legislators and drafters of legislation to draw on the policy for establishing or updating their own national legislation.
Further discussion was encouraged in each state they had visited even after the consultation, and Barbados has until next Wednesday, October 3, to provide any additional feedback on the policy to the BNSI.
The consultation saw involvement by the Ministries of Tourism, Agriculture, Health, Commerce, Foreign Affairs, as well as private sector stakeholders in manufacturing, energy, construction, local utilities, and food production, as well as interest groups and agencies.
"We really want the legislators involved though because they will be the ones drafting the laws and they have not been participating as we would like in every country as we would like thus far. Each of the comments and suggestions will be appropriately deposed and we will come up with a revised document at the end of all the consultations for member states to approve. The changes made will be highlighted and where comments are accepted they will be clearly seen and where they are not, reasons will be given.
"The intent is that this process is as transparent and participatory as possible. We are targeting the 39th COTED (Council for Trade and Economic Development) in November for a presentation of the policy, but I don’t know if we will make that in time. However, we hope to make an update presentation to the [CROSQ] Council in October for their further input, if necessary, and approval."
The CROSQ Council comprises the directors/executive directors of the National Standards Bureaus in the 15 member states.