May 20, 2020, Bridgetown, BARBADOS – Regional metrologists (measurement experts), as well as their international counterparts, are today celebrating World Metrology Day (May 20th) by recognising the increasing importance their work will have to play in the current climate and the future economic recovery.
The CARICOM Regional Organisation for Standards & Quality (CROSQ) recognised the day by acknowledging the work of metrologists in the region, as many of our countries continue to grapple with the COVID19 pandemic.
CEO, Mr. Deryck Omar stated that many National Standards Bodies which comprise the CROSQ Network have been offering their measurement services and trying to find ways to support essential services on the frontline, as well as the business community, many of which are now phasing back into operation across the region.
He said this was one of the ways that quality services remained very relevant at this time and lauded the regions NSBs for their management in these times of crisis.
The CEO stated: “CROSQ and its constituent NSBs have been reminding resource providers and government officials that in such pandemic situations, it is important to continue to treat quality infrastructure as a growing asset and resist the temptation of disinvestments. This is because a robust and evolving quality infrastructure will help to:
- avoid costly private sector quality mistakes when said companies can least afford it;
- protect consumers health and safety when individually, consumers are least able to help themselves;
- protect consumers from substandard (and often lower priced) products and services; and,
- protect the environment from compromises.”
CROSQ Technical Officer for Metrology, Mr. David Tomlinson underscored the importance of the work being done, as well as that which is still developing, as he delivered the video address to mark the highly specialised day of significance.
He hailed the efforts of leaders across the region in attempting to keep populations safe, as well as those who have worked tirelessly on the frontlines in healthcare, retail and distribution to keep people healthy.
“In addition to those on the frontline, I must applaud my colleagues in the metrology community who have been doing their part to battle Covid-19. Some of you have been working assiduously throughout the lockdowns to support the testing laboratories and clinical services with calibration of their measurement devices such as clinical thermometers and dosage devices to ensure persons are diagnosed and treated properly. Others of you have been working to design and support the manufacture of critical medical devices such as respirators and we have seen where our colleagues in the standards development community have been making key related standard specifications such as those for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) available for free,” he said in the message to mark the occasion.
Recognising the theme of the day, “Measurements for Global Trade”, Mr. Tomlinson expressed the anticipation that measurement for trading will become a critical component of getting economies back up and running in the second half of 2020.
“Despite all the figurative and literal clouds on the horizon, Covid-19 has shown us that mankind can quickly harmonise and mobilise systems towards a common objective. The international measurement system has been long established and harmonized but there is still much work to be done to mobilise these systems in a real way in developing economies especially Small Island Developing States such as in the Caribbean and the Pacific. Accurate measurements are critical for domestic and international trade particularly within global value chains, and while we have made significant progress as a region, we still have a lot of work to do,” he opined.
But he promised, the efforts were not beyond the capabilities that exist in CARICOM or among the region’s metrologists. CROSQ, under the European Union-funded 11th European Development Fund (EDF) Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Programme, will seek to strengthen the measurement infrastructure of the region through accreditation of two measurement labs, and provision of technical assistance to build capacity of four others.
“As we now begin to shift our focus towards economic recovery, our National Metrology Institutes and the entire Regional Quality Infrastructure will have to play their part in re-energizing trade. The CROSQ Secretariat will continue to play our part in developing a harmonized national and regional metrology infrastructure that is traceable to the international community. It is not beyond our abilities,” he said.
For more information, please contact,
Ms Latoya Burnham – Technical Officer, Quality Promotions – CROSQ