Staff Report ISLAMABAD: The National Proficiency Testing services have been launched in Pakistan which will further strengthen the quality infrastructure and contribute towards building international reputation of this infrastructure all over the world.
The initiative, taken under the Trade Related Technical Assistance-II Programme with the European Union funding, is the result of strong collaboration of National Physical and Standards Laboratory (NPSL) with the Ministry of Science and Technology and its various institutions like Pakistan Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (PCSIR), under the auspices of UNIDO and Intellectual Property Organization.
Proficiency testing is the evaluation of measurement capacity where a group of laboratories compare their results of a test with many others who have tested the same materials. It is also a means of proving competency by testing laboratories to perform testing services for achieving accreditation and a major step towards enhancing competence and meeting the international quality standards.
Eminent scientists, a large number of executives of as many as 14 testing laboratories, senior officials from the MoST and other related departments attended the proficiency testing launching ceremony held in Islamabad.
Former Federal Minister for SandT Dr. Sania Nishtar, who was the chief guest, Secretary Science and Technology Kamran Ali Qureshi, Head of Cooperation European Delegation to Pakistan, Berend De Groot, UNIDO Chief Technical Advisor TRTA-II Programme, Bruno Valanzuolo, Director General NSPL Shaheen Raja and JTA MoST Masroor Ahmad Qureshi spoke on the occasion and highlighted the proficiency testing initiative.
In her address, Dr. Sania termed the proficiency testing services a milestone in bringing the quality of Pakistani products to the international standards and a wide opportunity for the country to earn foreign exchange. She appreciated the cooperation and interest of all institutions and experts who made this significant initiative possible in the country.
She also said Pakistan is striving to improve its position in the world market. For this, the public and private actors of this process need to understand the importance of ensuring the international compatibility of the exported products.
Addressing the audience, Secretary SandT Kamran Qureshi said NSPL has done a great job by launching these services in Pakistan and another example of the SandT Ministry towards strengthening the quality infrastructure of Pakistan. “As we are aware, testing laboratories play an important role in certifying export commodities and consumer items thereby facilitating the export market and ensuring availability of safe food and other consumer items to the general public,” maintained Qureshi.
In his presentation, UNIDO international expert Jayasinghe said that proficiency testing laboratory is a platform where measurements are made, unknowns become quantified, samples turn into data and the date into information upon which decisions are made.
Highlighting the importance of this initiative for Pakistan, he said since the country is hectically taking steps to enhance its exports and improve quality standards at the international level, the proficiency testing labs would play a significant role in materializing this endeavour.
Dr. Nirmala M. Pieris, another international expert from UNIDO, spoke on the need for proficiency testing and said this development would go a long way in supporting economic integration of Pakistan into the global and regional economy, stimulating employment creation by enhancing enabling climate for international trade. “Capacity building, export development through improvement of quality infrastructure and strengthening of the intellectual property rights are the focus areas of this initiative.”
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