SADC National Accreditation Focal Points trained on Marketing and Communication of accreditation services

SADC Regional Economic Integration Support (REIS) Programme capacity building activities in support of the implementation of the Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Annex to the SADC Protocol on Trade continued with the training of 22 SADC NAFPs in Marketing and Communication of accreditation services.

The training took place at the Phakalane Golf Estate resort in Gaborone, Botswana from 25 – 27 February 2015 and all 13 SADC Member States which use SADC Accreditation Service (SADCAS) for their accreditation needs were represented.

Accreditation is a specialized technical area within the broad framework of quality assurance and its marketing requires a unique approach.

The facilitator from THINKPLAN took the delegates through a programme involving basic techniques in marketing and communication, special sessions on marketing and communication of accreditation, development of appropriate marketing presentations and actual presentation trials in groups and plenary sessions. The facilitator also led the group in drafting a common template for preparation of presentations to ensure a regionally harmonized approach to accreditation marketing.

The target market for accreditation is mainly conformity assessment bodies (CABs) which include laboratories, certification and inspection bodies. Accreditation is the independent attestation that CABs are competent to perform the activities they are mandated to carry out. Conformity assessment reports from accredited CABs are internationally accepted and remove the need for re-testing of traded goods when they cross borders and thus keep the cost of the goods lower for consumers.

The trained NAFPs will now be expected to market accreditation to relevant stakeholders in their Member States and so contribute to unhindered movement of goods for trade within the region and internationally.

Published On: February 25, 2015|