Date: October 15th, 2021: The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) joined the Trinidad and Tobago Bureau of Standards (TTBS) and the international community in celebrating World Standards Day 2021 on Thursday 14th October, 2021. World Standards Day is a global initiative which pays tribute to the collaborative efforts of the thousands of experts worldwide who develop the voluntary technical requirements that are published as International Standards.
World Standards Day 2021’s theme, Standards for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – Shared Vision for a Better World recognised the value of standardization in advancing and implementing the United Nations’ (UN’s) seventeen (17) SDGs. These SDGs are a universal call to action to address social imbalances, develop a sustainable economy, and slow the rate of climate change.
Speaking at a webinar in commemoration of the event, Senator the Honourable Paula Gopee-Scoon, Minister of Trade and Industry recognized the integral role that standardization plays in the achievement of the SDGs and underscored the importance of standardization in strengthening Trinidad and Tobago’s trade competitiveness.
Minister Gopee-Scoon further highlighted the work of TTBS as the National Standards Body, as it represents the interests of stakeholders in International Standards Bodies, such as International Standardization for Organization (ISO) and International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), saying, “Representation in these bodies allows our national experts and stakeholders to directly contribute to the development of International Standards and to ensure that these standards meet the needs of Trinidad and Tobago, for accelerated socio-economic transformation and increased global competitiveness.”
Minister Gopee-Scoon added that, “the Government is focused on accelerating the implementation of the National Quality Policy with particular focus on the manufacturing sector to ensure adherence to international standards and technical regulations. The policy will improve the reliability of measurements and increase the number of accredited, testing and certification facilities. To ensure that we effectively meet required international standards, the Government remains steadfast on strengthening our National Quality Infrastructure.”
“To this end, a National Standardization Strategy (NSS) 2019-2022, was developed with critical input from local stakeholders and is currently being implemented. The NSS is essential to the implementation of the National Quality Policy, as it identifies the key standardization requirements of the country for improved trade facilitation and overall global competitiveness.”
TTBS continues to champion the implementation of the National Quality Policy and has further delivered on numerous standards that are in alignment with the NSS, and relevant to the UN’s SDGs, some of which include:
- Standards for Information Security Management Systems and Standards on Cloud Computing in support of the Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago’s thrust for the digitization of the economy;
- Standards for construction, textiles, consumer products and electric cables to support economic diversification;
- Standards on Good Agricultural Practices to support the drive towards ensuring food security and economic sustainability;
- Standards for electric vehicle charging systems and relevant infrastructure to support the initiative for low carbon emissions; and
- Standards for non-medical face masks and cleaning chemicals to protect public health and safety during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Additionally, collaboration is currently being undertaken with WASA to update the National Plumbing Code to ensure clean and safe water for all citizens.
Speaking on behalf of the Ministry of Planning and Development, Dr Marissa Gowrie, Deputy Environmental Manager, Environmental Policy and Planning Division, further endorsed TTBS’ contribution to the development of Standards which are in alignment with the SDGs, saying, “The Trinidad and Tobago Bureau of Standards (TTBS) demonstrates the importance and potential of partnership and engagement towards the attainment of SDGs, since the work of this organization directly impacts on government, private sector and communities at large. Appreciating that the standards system is built on collaboration, the Ministry of Planning and Development is very pleased to continue partnering with the TTBS to ensure that the necessary principles that underpin sustainability are pursued and established.”
TTBS’ Executive Director, Mr Derek Luk Pat, in his address, reinforced the need for deep collaboration and commitment required at all levels of society, saying, “As the National Standards Body for our nation, we stand ready together with our network of experts at the national, regional and international level, to provide technical solutions and guidance in the form of standards, to assist in the implementation of Vision 2030 and the UN SDGs.
We must keep abreast of developments related to climate change, circular economy, sustainable finance, ICT development, energy management as well as public health and risk management, in order to diversify our national economy in a sustainable and resilient manner, powered by a highly-capable workforce.”
For further information, please contact:
Ms. Nadita Ramachala
Manager, Standardization Division
Trinidad and Tobago Bureau of Standards