UNIDO-ECO International EGM to help facilitate trade in Pakistan

UNIDO-ECO International EGM to help facilitate trade in Pakistan

ISLAMABAD: (APP) A three day meeting of quality experts from Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) member states commenced here Monday to develop guiding principles for the development of national quality policies for ECO countries.

The Expert Group Meeting (EGM) was funded and organized by United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and ECO, in cooperation with the Ministry of Science and Technology of Pakistan (MoST).

Representatives from member states were attending the Expert

Group Meeting (EGM), which provides opportunities for network building among experts across ECO Member States for information/ experience sharing and strengthening of cooperation.

Speaking on the occasion, UNIDO representative, Esam Alqararah said that the EGM provides participants with modern tools, to help developing cohesive trade integration in ECO region.

The EGM would serve not only to finalise the National Quality Policy guide but serve also as a platform with great opportunities of experience sharing and network building amongst ECO Member States.

He said UNIDO is working with ECO since 2007 in the field of Quality Infrastructure very much in line with ECO's efforts to promote multi-dimensional regional cooperation for creating enabling environment for sustainable socio economic growth among member states. The EGM represents the third phase of UNIDO-ECO cooperation.

He said the UNIDO and TRATA assistance to Pakistan was multi- dimensional and ranged from but not limited to establishment of sound quality infrastructure and its international recognition, building capacities for robust trade policy, creating enabling environment for business and enhancing competitiveness of key products sectors, etc.

He said National Quality Policy has been tabled to the cabinet for its final approval.UNIDO supports many countries worldwide to foster trade by contributing to creating enabling environment and Removing the nontariff barriers to trade.

UNIDO representative said that the policies to facilitate trade, economic cooperation and development in ECO Region Quality experts from Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) Member States have gathered to develop Guiding Principles for the Development of National Quality Policies for ECO countries.

To ensure the implementation and effectiveness of the Regional Quality Policy and to support ECO Member States to develop corresponding National Quality Policies, the Expert Group Meeting was aimed at the development of guiding principles for the establishment of National Quality Policies.

The Expert Group meeting will also provide opportunities for network building among experts across ECO Member States for information/experience sharing and strengthening of cooperation.

Minister for Science and Technology, Director General of Pakistan Standards; Quality Control Authority (PSQCA), President of Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI), Director General of Pakistan National Accreditation (PNAC), Chairman of Pakistan Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (PCSIR) and other prominent quality experts attended the meeting.

ECO is an inter-governmental organization involving ten countries: Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

As the successor organization of Regional Cooperation Development (1964-1979), ECO was founded in 1985 in Iran for the purpose of promoting economic, technical and cultural cooperation among Member States.

The ECO Trade Agreement (ECOTA) was singed in 2003 in Islamabad to incorporate the measures to facilitate the free movement of goods amongst Member States through harmonization of standards, especially technical regulations.

For effective achievement of ECOTA objectives, the Statute of ECO Regional Institute for Standardization, Conformity Assessment, Accreditation and Metrology (RISCAM) was drafted in 2007 and it is under ratification process by Member States.