“Setting up a Quality Infrastructure System is one of the most positive and practical steps that a developing nation can take on the path forward to developing a thriving economy as a basis for prosperity, health and well-being.”1
Quality Infrastructure refers to the system of organisations and processes that help ensure the quality of goods and services and facilitate access to global markets. It consists of key pillars like standardisation, metrology, accreditation, and conformity assessment. Collectively these systems help stimulate industrial development, trade competitiveness, innovation, and the efficient use of resources, while protecting human health and the environment.
The Pacific Islands Forum is leading the Pacific Quality Infrastructure (PQI) Initiative, which aims to strengthen quality infrastructure across all Forum Island Countries to increase trade competitiveness. Given that quality infrastructure plays a crucial role both for trade and national health systems, support throughout will contribute to the regional recovery from COVID-19.
The PQI Initiative was officially endorsed by Forum Trade Ministers for a 5-year work program covering different streams of work, including standards, metrology, conformity assessment and quality promotion.
Standards Work Program
As an implementing partner under the PQI Initiative, Standards Australia is delivering the standards stream of work in collaboration with all Forum Island Countries. Activities for 2021-2022 will include:
- Planning workshop to set the course for the program
- Needs assessment to benchmark current standards activities
- Capacity building workshops on key topics of standards development
- Mentoring program with Standards Australia staff
- Establishment of a Regional Standards Committee
These activities will lead into two additional years of implementation, with an anticipated completion in 2023.