The Keetmanshoop business community believe that the Growth at Home strategy cannot be fully realized without the support from the Namibian Standards Institution (NSI). The business community feels that NSI should play an important role in ensuring entrepreneurs especially those in manufacturing sector are applying standards in their production processes.
The NSI in collaboration with the NCCI Karas branch held an information sharing session with the business community in Keetmanshoop over the weekend in commemoration with World Metrology Day.
In her opening address, the Keetmanshoop Mayor, Gaudentia Krohne stated that the functions NSI performs such development and harmonization of standards, testing, measurements, product inspection and certification are crucial in limiting the influx of sub-standard goods, counterfeits and contraband into Namibia. “It is therefore my call on NSI to be more visible at all economically active points in collaboration with Customs & Excise offices.” She said
The NSI’s Manager for Metrology, Victor Mundembe stated that there are a number of businesses in Namibia that are not fully complying with the regulations of the Trade Metrology Act. “Before measuring instruments are put in use, the owner has the responsibility to ensure the instruments are approved by the NSI. All technicians who are maintaining or repairing measuring instruments used in trade, such as retail scales, should be registered with the NSI to ensure the measuring instruments are regularly verified and certified.”
He added that many retailers in Namibia are selling products that are not complying with the packaging and labelling requirements such as declaring the quantities of the product, ensuring there is a contact detail of the manufacturer or packer and ensuring the product information is labelled in English. “This ensures protection of the consumer and fair trade.“
NSI’s Corporate Communications Officer Joanette Eises explained that the National Quality Policy is currently under review and the purpose of the policy is to improve the quality of life of the Namibian people reflected in the quality of products, services and living conditions; to provide better health, safety, consumer protection and protection of the environment. “The National Quality Policy aims to enable Namibian products to be highly competitive and support small and medium enterprises, for this to happen, NSI needs to be strengthened financially to ensure that sub-standard products are not circulating the local market.”
Many of the business people in attendance, especially the small and medium enterprises, were interested to know more about applying standards and product certification as well as metrology services assistance available from the NSI.
World Metrology Day is an annual celebration of the signature of the Metre Convention on 20 May 1875 by representatives of seventeen nations. The original aim of the Metre Convention is to ensure world-wide uniformity of measurement.