Standards should focus on people’s needs – PS

A cross section of delegates during the Codex colloquium

African countries have been urged to give priority to safety, security and economic and social welfare of the people, when formulating standards.

The call was issued by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Industry and Trade, Mr. Mussa Uledi, when opening a three-day Coordinating Committee for Africa (CCAFRICA) colloquium on Codex, funded by the African Union and the United State of America.

Mr. Uledi elaborated that sometimes it is difficult for developing countries to have traceability of their goods which are being followed by markets in the European Union and the United States of America (USA).

“There is a need for the participants to address such challenges in order to meet the standards desired by consumers. In most cases we fail to use these opportunities even in preferential markets because we cannot meet international standards,” he said.

He called for participants to use the opportunity to at least level the standards used by developed countries with those used by African countries in areas of goods exported and imported.

On her part, US Codex Manager said sponsoring issues like food safety standards is very important for both the US and Africa, and that what is needed is to identify areas of interest, challenges and find out solution. She said the aim of the project is to protect and support consumers, adding that food safety standards are vital.

Speaking earlier the Acting TBS Director, Mr. Joseph Masikitiko said Africans have high hopes that the meeting will open doors for more discussion on issues pertaining to standards as the discussion will focus on common challenges that all countries have been facing.

The meeting which was hosted by Tanzania, through the Tanzania Bureau of Standards and funded by USA, follows a cry of African countries regarding failure of their goods to access international markets.