By Naomi Uzor
The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has called on the business community to adhere strictly to global best practices, stressing this is the only way to be globally competitive.
The Director General, SON, Osita Aboloma, made this at the saying weekend the ongoing Lagos International Trade Fair noting that complying to standards would also make business operators smile to the bank while also boosting consumer confidence on locally produced goods.
Aboloma, however assured local and foreign investors of the agency’s unrelenting support to protect their brands from fakers and counterfeiters.
He also tasked Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) on standards, pointing out that the agency would continue to create the enabling environment for SMEs to thrive.
The SON boss listed some of the agency’s contributions the Ease of Doing Business initiative in Nigeria to include: transparent service delivery through placement of information on the website for easy access; electronic services for key activities such as the Mandatory Conformity Assessment Programme (MANCAP) for locally manufactured products; the off-shore Conformity Assessment Programme (SONCAP) for imported products and Management Systems’ Certification.
He added that others include reduction of service charges for purchase of standards, testing and training of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), reduction in the processing time for products certification to 60 days and electronic laboratory results.
Represented by a Director in DG’s office (Lagos), Kabir Yusuf, Aboloma stated that the agency’s activities are aimed at the protection of lives and property, promoting access to local and foreign markets for made-in-Nigeria products through improved consumer confidence as well as value addition to business in general.
According to him, the organisation is fully committed to the Ease of Doing Business initiative in Nigeria which promotes transparency, openness, information dissemination and fast turnaround time in service delivery.
He said SON has in place, requisite standards, processes and procedures, including human and institutional capacity development, product and management systems certification, testing and metrology services as well as fast tracking of import procedures among others to assist prospective Investors in Nigeria.