Business News of Tuesday, 21 February 2017
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has commenced the standardization of some electronic appliances to harmonize trading activities among member countries.
The standardization which focuses on air conditions and refrigerators will see to the easy import and export of these gadgets within the fifteen ECOWAS member countries. The move is also aimed at curbing the energy crisis facing member countries as the standard also focuses on low energy consuming gadgets.
The Director for Industry for the ECOWAS Commission, Mensan Lawson- Hechelli said the standardization process once completed will protect consumers and industries from financial losses as well as facilitate trade among member countries.
“This is just a step as you know ECOWAS we are on our way to build a common market so if you are moving from one country to another not only persons but also goods and services will be able to move across borders easily so we can trade better and get better interest,” he said. Ghana has in recent times faced periods of load shedding due to insufficient energy supply.
The use of gadgets which consume high amounts of energy has also been blamed for the development. The situation led to the collapse of numerous businesses. Mensan Lawson- Hechelli who spoke to Citi Business News at the sidelines of the meeting of the ECOWAS Technical Harmonization Committee also asserted that the move will bring uniformity within the sub-region.
“So this program is to support such common market to have products ready from one country to another with accepted standards, mutual standards so we have the same things across borders and we call it ECOWAS Standard,” he added. The countries include Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo.
The three day meeting is focused on the standardization of other materials other than electrical appliances. These include; agricultural inputs, cement among other things.