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CROSQ Launches New Quality Infrastructure Project with EU, ACP, UNIDO

Joint UNIDO/CROSQ Release

The CARICOM Regional Organisation for Standards and Quality (CROSQ) has officially launched a new project targeting the regional business sector for quality-related interventions.

The Caribbean component of the “African Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Quality Infrastructure (QI)” Programme, was launched at the 41st Meeting of the CROSQ Council of Directors, held in Barbados from October 10 to 11, where the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) provided a breakdown of the purpose and proposed approach of the programme.

The Programme, is an Intra-ACP action funded by the European Union and the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS) through a EUR 7 million contribution. The Programme is implemented by UNIDO and is scheduled to run until December 2025. It complements and builds on the ongoing achievements of the overall “ACP Business-Friendly” Programme, reinforcing UNIDO’s meso-level component.       

In his welcoming remarks, Hon. Kerrie D. Symmonds, Senior Minister, Ministry of Energy and Business of Barbados, commented “As we are celebrating the success of CROSQ in the last two decades, there is a need for us to recognize the necessity of this region to cement its integration and trade efforts.”

Minister Kerrie Symmonds shows a copy of the new Regional Non-Medical Laboratory Policy, while CROSQ Directors, officials and other partners look on.

Mr. Sheldon Jackman, Project Manager, EU Delegation to Barbados, the Eastern Caribbean States, the OECS, and CARICOM/CARIFORUM noted “A sound, internationally recognized quality and regulatory infrastructure is vital to enable market access and promote sustainable economic development as well as the environmental and social well-being.”

Mr. Escipión J. Oliveira Gómez, Assistant Secretary General, OACPS, reaffirmed the importance of the continuous partnership with the EU, the implementing agencies of the “ACP Business-Friendly” Programme, CROSQ and other collaborations.  Gómez highlighted the importance of such initiatives as “quality is the cornerstone of competitiveness”.

“Together with CROSQ and its Members, the baseline analysis is being established and priority value chains are about to be selected for specific QI-related support in the Caribbean,” said Mr. Bernard Bau, Industrial Development Officer at UNIDO. “This Programme also envisages a strong south-south cooperation that will allow less advanced ACP regions or countries to learn from the experience of those who have gone through the same development challenges quite recently.”

The meeting then followed with the launch of the RLP which was also developed under the “ACP Business-Friendly” Programme. This Policy aims to improve design, scoping and performance of non-medical laboratories in the CARICOM region. It is based on the  Laboratory Policy: A guide to development and implementation guideline which was published by UNIDO in 2021 with the support of the International Network on Quality Infrastructure (INetQI). The Policy is the first of its kind developed at a regional level, with the first pilot region being the Caribbean.

Deryck Omar, CEO of CROSQ, emphasized on the need for the Member States to adopt the Policy at the national level to help develop their trade laboratories.

In the ambit of the vision of UNIDO Director General, Gerd Müller, “Progress by innovation”, both launches are major milestones in fostering fair, transparent and sustainable industrial development through resilient value chains, sound investment promotion and renewed partnerships for the SDGs.

For more information on the “ACP Quality Infrastructure” Programme, read the flyer: https://bit.ly/3rHtxSv

Watch the 41st Conference Meeting here: https://youtu.be/sipMWVmnZFM

For further information contact:

Bernard Bau

Industrial Development Officer,

Division of SME Competitiveness, Quality and Job Creation (TCS/SME)


Ms. Latoya Burnham

Technical Officer, Quality Promotions

CARICOM Regional Organisation for Standards & Quality (CROSQ)