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National Quality Policy Presented to Stakeholders

Jamaica Information / Chief Technical Director in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Andrene Collings (second right), looks through the National Quality Policy 2017 with (from left) Chief Executive Officer of the Jamaica National Agency for Accreditation (JANAAC), Sharonmae Shirley; Quality Infrastructure Coordinator, Junior Gordon; and ISO Ambassador/Consultant for the International Organization for Standardization at the Ministry, Reginald Budhan. Occasion was a stakeholder workshop on the policy, held recently at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel, St. Andrew. + – Photo: Contributed Chief Technical Director in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Andrene Collings (second right), looks through the National Quality Policy 2017 with (from left) Chief Executive Officer of the Jamaica National Agency for Accreditation (JANAAC), Sharonmae Shirley; Quality Infrastructure Coordinator, Junior Gordon; and ISO Ambassador/Consultant for the International Organization for Standardization at the Ministry, Reginald Budhan. Occasion was a stakeholder workshop on the policy, held recently at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel, St. Andrew. Story Highlights The National Quality Policy (NQP) 2017, which articulates the Government’s position on the quality of goods and services produced and consumed in Jamaica, was presented to critical stakeholders during a workshop at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel recently. The policy, which is an update of the 2001 document, supports the achievement of the National Development Goals as expressed in the National Development Plan – Vision 2030 Jamaica, by facilitating the production and export of quality goods and services through the establishment and use of the National Quality Infrastructure (NQI) to ensure compliance with global market requirements. Chief Technical Director in the Ministry, Andrene Collins, said the review addresses several areas of standards that will bring about product integrity and help to build consumer confidence and trust in the quality of the service or good being offered.

The National Quality Policy (NQP) 2017, which articulates the Government’s position on the quality of goods and services produced and consumed in Jamaica, was presented to critical stakeholders during a workshop at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel recently.

The session, staged by the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, through its entity, the Jamaica National Agency for Accreditation (JANAAC), was attended by representatives from regulatory and testing bodies such as the Bureau of Standards Jamaica (BSJ) and the National Compliance and Regulatory Authority (NCRA).

The policy, which is an update of the 2001 document, supports the achievement of the National Development Goals as expressed in the National Development Plan – Vision 2030 Jamaica, by facilitating the production and export of quality goods and services through the establishment and use of the National Quality Infrastructure (NQI) to ensure compliance with global market requirements.

Chief Technical Director in the Ministry, Andrene Collins, said the review addresses several areas of standards that will bring about product integrity and help to build consumer confidence and trust in the quality of the service or good being offered.

She noted that “a lot of work, consultations and support from the World Bank have gone into this revised document, taking into account what is happening globally and to ensure that the quality policy is relevant, current and timely”.

She said that the 2001 policy was a simple document, but it served the country well, pointing out that from it, JANAAC and the NCRA were created.

She noted, however, that it is time to improve on the document based on new international best practices.

Mrs. Collins said the revised policy will better enable Jamaica to compete in the international marketplace, thereby fostering economic growth.

“Quality is the linchpin in global competitiveness. If Jamaica is serious about growth, then we have to look at the inputs, the standards and how we position ourselves… so we can think of the quality infrastructure as an enabling environment that allows us to pursue a path of growth,” she said.

“On a larger scale, having internationally accredited certification, which JANAAC offers, also facilitates trade, and it makes doing business easier because you are systematically accredited,” she noted further.

For her part, Chief Executive Officer of JANAAC, Sharonmae Shirley, noted the importance of stakeholder support for the policy.

“Accreditation is built on quality, which is why we want to ensure that all stakeholders are in agreement with the NQP, which will speak volumes about our competence to check assessment procedures in labs, conformity and certification bodies, as well as our manufacturing and testing environments, and increase trading possibilities in the international market,” she noted.

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