ZAMBIA – The Zambia Bureau of Standards (ZABS) has penned a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Angolan Institute of Standardization and Quality (INIQ) in a bid to increase trade between the two nations.
The MOU will see the two institutions strengthen their cooperation in standardization, conformity assessment, and training activities.
It will also guarantee that goods and services traded between the two nations are of a high standard, safe, and competitive in both markets.
ZABS Acting Executive Director Mr. Nathan Sing’ambwa and INIQ Executive Director Ms. Olga Dicamba signed the MoU on behalf of the two governments.
Mr. Sing’ambwa, the acting Executive Director of ZABS, stated that as the organization charged with ensuring the quality and safety of goods and services in Zambia, ZABS was prepared to work effectively with INIQ to ensure that standards for the goods identified as priorities for trade are standardized, and that mutual recognition agreements (MRAs) are effectively implemented to allow for the acceptance of certification marks and test certifications between the two organizations.
He also expressed his gratitude to the governments of Zambia and Angola for creating an environment that allowed the two national standards bodies to improve their relationship and for presenting them with the challenge of helping to facilitate trade between the two nations through standardization and quality assurance.
The signing ceremony was witnessed by His Excellences President Hakainde Hichilema and his Angolan Counterpart President Joao Manuel Goncalves Lourenco.
The Angolan Institute of Standardization and Quality is responsible for developing a national quality system to promote productivity, competitiveness, and domestic production capacity.
While Angola does not yet have a fully developed national standards regime, the country has a four-year National Normalization Plan (2021-2024). The plan focuses on sectors, which contribute to the country’s GDP and which the government considers strategic for economic development.
Voluntary technical standards are developed by the 17 technical committees that are part of INIQ. Standards established in Angola fall under the auspices of the Ministry of Industry.
To date INIQ has published 150 technical standards out of its goal of 428 as established in its strategic plan.
Angola has adopted or referenced and is considering technical standards from Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mozambique, Peru, Portugal, Spain, and the U.S.
In July 2015, ASTM International signed a memorandum of understanding with IANORQ to contribute to the development of standards in Angola.
Formerly known as American Society for Testing and Materials, ASTM International is an international standards organization that develops and publishes voluntary consensus technical standards.