Federal Government with the support of United Nations Industrial Development Organisation, UNIDO, has resolved to improve the quality of food and industrial exports from Nigeria, with a view to expanding the country’s non-oil exports which currently stand at $2.7billion.
This was announced yesterday in Abuja during the annual meeting of the steering committee on the National Quality Infrastructure, NQI, chaired by the director general, Standards Organisation of Nigeria, SON, Dr. Joseph Odumodu, where stakeholders discussed the progress made by UNIDO to improve the systems for quality and standards in trade and industry in Nigeria.
The meeting, which discussed extensively the suspension placed on the export of dried beans from Nigeria due to the presence of pesticide residues, was attended by some government officials, representatives from the EU delegation in Nigeria, Nigeria Competitiveness Support Programme partner projects in GIZ and DFID-GEMS3, as well as stakeholders from the private sector.
According to Odumodu, “The government needs to put certain measures in place to ensure that every product that is exportable must be certified. We need to establish a legal framework for the new institutions to be created as recommended in the National Quality Policy document.
“For the year in review, the quality infrastructure initiative set its focus to finalise all the pre-incorporation procedures to set up a National Accreditation System for Nigeria, to outline the procedures to apply the metrology framework in the country, and capacity building programmes.
“The training programmes were designed to develop the required capacities within the competent public authorities and the organised private sector, OPS that would guarantee that trade systems in Nigeria meet recognised international standards.
“An initial assessment of key industry sectors was also carried out in preparation for a two-month pilot demonstration programme that would apply NQI processes to solve the problems of quality in selected value chains in agriculture and industry.
“The NQI Project has trained over 500 personnel from the public sector, the organised private sector and analytical laboratories in the past year. We are working to ensure that the institutions for the National Quality Infrastructure would have competent support to operate once set up in Nigeria,” Odumodu stressed.

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