The Barbados National Standard Institution’s (BNSI) Metrology Laboratory has been commissioned, following significant physical and infrastructural upgrade.
And, Chief Executive Officer of CARICOM Regional Organisation for Standards and Quality, Deryck Omar, underscored the importance of this upgrade, as he highlighted the significance of commitment to quality.
“Quality must be built into every facet of a country’s development if it is to have the long-lasting and effective impact. And while the bureau of standards carries the charge of the development of quality infrastructure nationally, the process itself is one that must be inclusive of every sector, agency, business and individual in a country’s territorial boundaries,” Mr. Omar opined.
He made the comments as he and several others addressed the commissioning ceremony for the lab, on Tuesday, at the BNSI, at Culloden Road, St. Michael.
The BNSI’s Chairman, Ryan Brathwaite, shared that a key area of focus for the organisation had been finding strategic solutions to the economic problems of Barbados. He proffered the view that a part of the solutions was to enhance the industrial and export activity of the country.
“This is only possible if the quality of Barbados’ goods and services is improved to meet international standards, and remain cost competitive in the national and export markets.
“In order to exploit foreign markets, it is required that Barbados’ industry has access to an internationally recognised but supportive National Quality Infrastructure (NQI) that can provide the required evidence of product and service compliance. Strategic considerations have better positioned BNSI in developing efficiencies in providing such NQI services, as well as strengthening other NQI institutions,” Mr. Brathwaite explained.
Director, Projects Department, Caribbean Development Bank, Daniel Best, said just over one year ago, during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the “Strengthening of the Regional Quality Infrastructure Programme in Barbados, Dominica, and St. Kitts and Nevis Project”, the second EPA and CSME Standby Facility initiative, was launched online.
Mr. Best noted that with the completion of the upgrade, the BNSI would now offer new and enhanced measurement and calibration services to the business community, in particular, the construction and infrastructure sectors.
“At CDB, we are seeking to stimulate commerce; enhance economic integration, and deepen cooperation through a series of projects being implemented by the European Union (EU) financed Standby Facility for Capacity Building and the other private sector programmes in the Private Sector Division….
“The EU has provided over €8 million under the Standby Facility to enhance trade, recognising as we do, that improved economic performance increases opportunities for citizens. Greater opportunities in the economic realm will lead to a higher quality of life for all. The Bank is therefore committed to seeing the successful completion of all 23 Standby Facility projects at varying stages of implementation,” he stated.
Mr. Best challenged those in the private sector, namely in the construction and infrastructure sectors with an export focus, to pursue new and regional opportunities.
Head of EU Delegation to Barbados, Ambassador Malgorzata Wasilewska, said it was expected that with the improvements at the BNSI, there would be an enhancement to the National Quality Infrastructure.
“A well-functioning Quality Infrastructure will open doors for producers in CARIFORUM countries to the regional and international markets, and particularly the huge EU market of above 500 million consumers, helping the regional producers raise the standard of their goods and services, and thereby enhancing their competitiveness,” Ambassador Wasilewska stated.
She stressed that the EU remains committed to its partnerships in the region.