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Boosting Exports: US Standards Body Accredits SON Laboratories In Nigeria

The federal government policies aimed at promoting made-in-Nigeria goods in the international market has received a major boost as a standards body in the United State of America has licensed Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON)’s laboratories in Lagos.

The Director General, SON, Farouk Salim, says the accreditation would go a long way to drive local production while also conserving the foreign exchange spent on taking goods outside the shores of the country for testing.

While unveiling the newly accredited laboratories in Ogba area of Lagos State, Salim noted that the accreditation would make exporting to the United States of America and the rest of the world more seamless, maintaining that the accreditation means that Nigeria is fully ready for the business of export to the world.

In his words, “We are allowed to export to the United States, now with the accreditation showing that our products are up to standard, it means it would be easier for exporters to export to America and every other country in the world, so it makes things easier because there is legitimacy and authentication. The consumers abroad will have the confidence to buy goods coming from Nigeria because the certification shows that the goods have been tested and verified okay for consumption.”

“What it means for our market is that, most of our manufacturers you heard them saying that their products were rejected even by our local companies because their products are not certified, because they do not have laboratory certificate to say that they are up to standard, but now that excuse is out of the way and also because of the export potentials of our industries, with the certification it is easy for them to export anywhere in the world because an accredited laboratory means that whatever we say is good is good.” The SON boss explained.”

Salim said plans are ongoing to establish more laboratories to ensure that goods can be tested anywhere in the country, “Our main plan is that in every State, there should be a minimum of some laboratory activity that can be done, because we do not want people traveling from one State to another for testing. The three laboratories is a step forward especially with the AfCFTA in full force,” he added.

For her part, the Deputy Director, Federal Institute of Industrial Research Oshodi, (FIIRO), Dr. Adebukola Huthman, commended the standards body for unveiling the accredited laboratories, acknowledging that getting an accreditation is not an easy feat especially in a country like Nigeria.

“I know what you had to go through to achieve this, but to go ahead to meet the tough requirements means that SON has done lots of beautiful work and it also shows that their results have a lot of integrity and there is high confidence in their result. “An accredited laboratory means that Nigeria has the same standards with other countries in the world. SON’s laboratories are among the very few accredited laboratories in the world,” she said.

Director General, SON, Farouk Salim

Also speaking, the Head, Planning, Research and Statistics, Institute of Public Analysts of Nigeria (IPAN), Emmanuel Odega, said having the three laboratories accredited the same time is a commendable achievement. “The entire Nigeria is proud of what you are doing. Accreditation assures that your goods carry the same quality with any other country in the world and that is a boost to the economy, it will help to earn foreign exchange for the country because some of the products currently being taken away outside the shores of the country for testing will be stopped,” he added.

On his part, the Executive Secretary, Paints Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (PMAN), Jude Maduka, said the accreditation would facilitate the competitiveness of made-in-Nigeria goods in the AfCFTA, stressing that the laboratories would also strengthen SON’s testing capabilities.

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