African culture should not be forgotten in standardisation: Iipumbu

15 Mar 2019 11:40am
WINDHOEK, 15 MAR (NAMPA) - African values and traditions should not be forgotten during standardisation of products, the Deputy Minister of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development, Lucia Iipumbu has said.
Iipumbu was speaking at the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) Quality Awards on Wednesday.
“As we are setting standards, we must not forget where we come from and we must acknowledge our (African) cultural values and our norms that shape us in the people we are today,” Iipumbu noted.
The deputy minister noted that quality enhancement became the central focus of the World Trade Organization (WTO) trade agenda, hence the absolute need to pay special attention to the quality of our products and services
“The ultimate goal was the enhancement of the overall quality of products and services emanating from all WTO member states as well as the elimination of all possible technical and tariff barriers to trade amongst member states,” Iipumbu said.
Speaking at the same event, Sadc Executive Secretary, Dr Stergomena Lawrence Tax said in light of the Sadc Quality Awards, the private sector is called on to participate in quality competitions of this nature, so as to serve as national and regional role models.
Tax said the private sector is called to participate in the development and adoption of internationally recognised national standards, implement standard and quality principles in their daily operations and get certified for systems and product quality.
Tax also requested Sadc member states to run national quality awards and to motivate the private sector to participate in both national and regional quality awards.
The Sadc quality awards saw Zambia and Zimbabwe as the winner of the night.
Schweppes Zimbabwe Limited took Company of year honours, while Zim Trade won Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) company of the year.
Product of the year went to SME Comaco Zambia and Service in Large Enterprises of the year was taken by Eswatini Railways.
Fairy Bottling Zambia took Exporter in Large Enterprises of the year.
These awards are aimed at the promotion of standards and quality principles by companies (both private and public) and to ensure that systems, products and services meet the requirements of national, regional and international standards.