International Economics led a consortium to support the Botswana Bureau of Standards (BOBS) in drafting the National Quality Infrastructure (QI) policy that would set the foundation for the proper functioning of QI institutions. The project involved the capacity building of BOB’s staff and local service providers through a series of training on auditing and inspection competencies as per international standards. The project also raised awareness of the key elements of the WTO/TBT Agreement among public and private relevant stakeholders for the purpose of enhancing their compliance with the WTO Agreements.
National Quality Policy in Botswana
The Project at A Glance
What We Found
Botswana needs to improve its national quality infrastructure, in order to promote exports. In the context of its Economic Diversification Drive, the Government of Botswana is putting in place the conditions for strengthening the private sector. However, the absence of a national policy on QI is viewed as an important concern to be addressed. Economic operators also need to be made cognisant of the importance of a reliable and internationally recognised QI which can be a determining factor in promoting trade and increasing exports.
Our Strategy and Impact
A National Quality Policy was developed in close collaboration with the Ministry of Trade and Industry, and through consultations with stakeholders from the public and private sectors. As part of the exercise, the situation in Botswana was benchmarked against international good practices, and against the requirements set out in the WTO TBT Agreement.
The Botswana Bureau of Standards was acknowledged as the national standards organisation providing standards and conformity assessment services in Botswana and declared the custodian of the national measurement standards. The SADC Accreditation Service also retained its role as the de facto national accreditation body.
However, it was advised that the standards and metrology-related legislation be reviewed and brought up to date. Botswana should consider limiting the number of regulatory authorities in the country and the regulatory activities of the Botswana Bureau of Standards should be diverted to an independent regulatory authority of the Ministry of Trade and Industry. Moreover, a national approach to technical regulation development and implementation has been developed and implemented. This applies to all Ministries, including their regulatory agencies. This will enable trade facilitation.
In addition, we provided training to selected personnel from the Botswana Bureau of Standards to improve understanding of a number of important international standards dealing with conformity assessment services that the entity provides and for which it needs to be accredited. Training was equally extended to numerous local service providers to develop consultancy capacity in Botswana with regard to the implementation of relevant management system certifications.
Our Core Solutions
Understanding the sustainability provisions in FTAs is important for businesses as they seek to import or export from certain markets. At IEC, we provide our clients with a detailed analysis of the key impacts of new trade agreements on their operations and competitiveness through an assessment of tariff, and non-tariff tariff barriers, provisions on rules of origin, customs efficiency, the effectiveness of transport networks, and sustainability provisions, among others. We can help assess the opportunities in different markets, determine the feasibility and viability of projects, and benchmark the wider ecosystem to support business growth.