From 18th to 21st June 2019, the Community Committee for Conformity Assessment (ECOCONF) held a meeting in Abuja to adopt the five product certification schemes in the framework of the ECOWAS certification Mark. These schemes will be extended to the products of the four selected regional value chains. The meeting took note that quality labels for food and agriculture should be developed. This is especially with regards to products of the selected regional chains (Mango, cassava and derivative products) as recommended by the last steering committee of the WAQSP.
During the meeting, WACQIP’s CTA also informed the committee of the four regional selected value chains for which the reference laboratories should be prepared for the relevant product analysis.
Four regional experts and 42 national experts have been selected to identify quality infrastructure needs in the member states. The reports of this survey are expected to be delivered by the end of January 2020.
The objectives of the 4 regional consultants are to:
- Identify exact needs in terms of technical regulations and standards of the selected regional value chain of the Member States
- Identify Laboratories that can conduct tests on products of the regional value chains and their capacity development needs.
- Determine the existing testing, inspections and calibration methods of the products in the VCs in member countries vis a vis those required at the international level.
- Determine the exact needs of these certification bodies including the capacity building that may be required.
- Determine the number of companies and enterprises Including MSMEs involved in the value chain that will need to be supported for ECOWAS Certification Mark
- Determine the sectorial application required for the products of the value chain.
The discovery will be able to streamline the quality infrastructure support that may be necessary for the regional value chains in each of the member states.