SON unveils standardization strategy to bolster Nigeria’s socio-economic development

NIGERIA – The Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) has unveiled what is tagged the Nigeria National Standardization Strategy (NNSS) to unlatch a total of 658 standardization projects in key priority areas classified by economic sectors as highlighted in the federal government’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) and Nigerian Industrial Revolution Plan (NIRP).

Explaining the NNSS at a capacity building workshop for media practitioners, the Director, Standards Development, SON, Chinyere Egwuonwu said it is a document that identifies priorities for standardization in a country based on an assessment of national needs. She stressed that it is usually accompanied by a national implementation plan and gives orientation for national standardization work within three years.

“It helps to develop standards in a most effective way, using the available resources in the most efficient manner, driven mainly by the SON with strong stakeholders’ engagement and assessment of national standardization priorities.”

Chinyere Egwuonwo, Director, Standards Development, SON Tweet

Egwuonwu said the NNSS is the first ever Nigerian standardization strategy listing priority standards to be developed, adding that it is currently being driven by the SON with support from all the key stakeholders.

She noted that the aim of the strategy is to support Nigeria’s industrialization strategies and unbridle prospects for improved socio-economic development, maintaining that NNSS was officially approved by the Standards Council of Nigeria.

She said standards development is demand/stakeholder driven, which means the standards must be developed carefully, continue to meet stakeholders’ demands and expectations, noting that with the constant improvements in science, technology and innovation, demands for standards continuously upsurge.

The director however stated that there is always the constraint of inadequate resources both human and financial for carrying out standards development work, resulting in the need to focus on national priority areas in order to use the available resources to develop standards on most important areas.

“The implementation is healthy and is also aligned with relevant regional, continental and international standards development organizations to make it relevant as an enabler for Nigeria to enter the global market. It is strictly being implemented and we are working hard to ensure that we achieve the scheduled standards so that the needed standards are available for our stakeholders to participate in the ongoing African Continental free trade Area (AfCFTA).”

Chinyere Egwuonwo, Director, Standards Development, SON Tweet

According to This Day, she informed that a total of 274 standards were planned to be developed in the first year, i.e., 2020 of the NNSS implementation plan and a total of 264 was achieved making it 96 per cent achievement despite the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The SON boss pointed out that the success of NNSS depends on active participation of the key stakeholders in public and private sectors, adequate funding for the national standardization programme and uptake of the resultant standards by the business community and policy makers.

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