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Saturday, July 11, 2015, Ashar 27, 1422 BS, Ramadan 23, 1436 Hijr

BSTI plans to achieve global standard to increase exports
Published :Saturday, 11 July, 2015,  Time : 12:00 AM  View Count : 15

Aiming to establish a world-class product testing laboratory in the country, the government has taken up a number of programmes to upgrade the existing facilities of the Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution (BSTI).
A senior official at the Industries Ministry said the Awami League-led government after assuming power in 2009 accorded due importance to upgrading the BSTI facilities, viewing it as a key component of their strategy to increase exports and foreign exchange earnings.
 The matter found mention in the joint communique issued after Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's visit to New Delhi in 2010 for a summit with her then Indian counterpart Dr Manmohan Singh.
An umbrella project, titled 'Modernisation and strengthening of BSTI', under the Indian line-of-credit is now going on.
Under the project, gold and brick testing laboratories have already been established, apart from procuring additional modern equipment to examine food items.
According to official documents, another project titled 'Better quality infrastructure of better work and standards (BEST)' is being implemented with financial assistance from the EU, Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD) and GIZ (German Technical Cooperation), apart from Bangladesh government funds, and technical assistance from the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).
Under this project, there is a component titled 'Bangladesh Quality Infrastructure'. Under this component, financial and technical assistance is being given to the BSTI to upgrade its quality measurement system in line with global standards, and increase awareness about the quality of products at public and private levels.
It is also providing financial and technical assistance for attaining necessary accreditation for the laboratories under the National Metrology Laboratory (NML), which already got the international recognition.
Meanwhile under another project, a laboratory building with modern equipment has been constructed at the main office of the BSTI in the capital's Tejgaon.
Food items, construction materials, including cement, rods, bricks, and electric fans, are currently being tested at the facility, where weighing machines are being calibrated.
Aiming to expand the activities of the BSTI down to the district level, full-fledged regional offices with food, chemical, physical, engineering and metrology laboratories have been established in Sylhet and Barisal divisions under development budget.
Besides, BSTI office-cum-laboratories are being set up in Rangpur division, Faridpur, Comilla, Cox's Bazar and Mymensingh at a cost of Tk 51.82 crore to the government.
"With the implementation of the project it'll be possible to further strengthen BSTI's activities in the upazilas and unions under those districts," a BSTI official told UNB.
Another project titled 'Barrier removal to the cost effective development and implementation of energy standards and labeling (BRESL)' is at the last stage of implementation.
Bangladesh government and Global Environment Facility (GEF) are funding the Tk 18.63 crore project with technical assistance from UNDP.
The aim of the project is to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases through conventional power generation and formulation of national standard and labelling for energy efficient products like AC, refrigerator, fan, electric motor, electric blast and CFL.    ?UNB

Editor : Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury
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