GHANA – The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)  has developed a state-of-the-art virtual workshop to enhance the capacities of conformity assessment service providers in its member states to acquire ISO/IEC 17025 accreditation.

Developing countries are constantly striving to enhance their export competitiveness, strengthen their export base and become more integrated with international trade flows.

As a joint effort between  UNIDO implemented projects; the European Union funded West African Competitiveness Programme (WACOMP) and the Government of Switzerland funded Global Quality and Standards Programme (GQSP) in Ghana, organised a training course on ISO/IEC 17025 accredited lab testing works to ensure that products meet regulations of the targeted markets.

The laboratory experts through the training are expected to have the competence to generate valid results, thereby promoting confidence in their work both locally and internationally.

Abena Safoa Osei, the Chief Technical Advisor and Project Coordinator for the Global Quality and Standards Programme in Ghana who was one of the training facilitators, said the training was historic because it benefitted not only the focused testing laboratories of UNIDO, but other equally important testing laboratories in Ghana.

“It is a major achievement for UNIDO  in terms of impact and also for the beneficiary laboratories as they can now demonstrate compliance with global quality infrastructure (QI) markers,” he said.

Frederick Gyamera Owusu, UNIDO WACOMP Ghana, National Quality Infrastructure expert and Facilitator of the joint training also said it was important for UNIDO to support a quality infrastructure framework for Ghana in standardization, to achieve compliance with international standards and metrology services to demonstrate accurate measurements.

“Today it is widely acknowledged that one of the first steps in facilitating acceptance of foreign-generated test results happens through accreditation, using an agreed set of general criteria for the competence of testing laboratories.

“As a leader in the field of quality infrastructure, UNIDO has a big role to play in shaping the future of conformity assessment globally and as it is the largest multilateral player in quality infrastructure development, with a proven track record of enhancing national capacities,”Mr. Gyamera said.

63 lab analysts from 20 laboratories in Ghana have consequently received certificates after successfully completing the EN- ISO / IEC 17025: 2017 course.

Beneficiaries were from Ghana Standards Authority (GSA), Food and Drugs Authority (FDA), Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) Laboratories, COCOBOD – Quality Control Company, Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, National Nuclear Research Institute (NNRI), Radiation Protection Institute, and the University of Cape Coast Laboratories.

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