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14.10.2005 Disaster

Observe standards to avoid disasters - Deputy Minister

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Accra, Oct. 14, GNA - Mr. Kofi Osei-Ameyaw, Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, on Friday noted that a number of disastrous events could have been averted if standards that had been set were followed. The disasters, he said, included the collapse of buildings, carnage on the roads and fire outbreaks in homes, offices and market places. Speaking at the 36th World Standards Day celebrations in Accra, Mr Osei-Ameyaw noted that, no society would be able to develop or even survive without adherence to standards.

"Compliance to standards for example, will mean that vehicles that ply our roads will be tested periodically to ensure that only safe and roadworthy ones are allowed to use the road." The day is being observed under the theme: "Standards for a Safer World".

Mr Osei-Ameyaw said the importance of standards in national development had been emphasized in the Ghana Trade Policy set within the context of Ghana's long-term strategic vision to achieve middle-income status and become a leading agro-industrial country in Africa. The Policy, he noted, also recognised the compliance to applicable standards as a task that all citizens must strive to achieve if the nation was to be relevant in the global economy. The policy, he noted, provided clear and transparent guidelines for the implementation of domestic and international trade agenda. Mr Adu Gyamfi Darkwa, Executive Director, Ghana Standards Board, said the celebration of the day was a way of promoting the benefits that standards provided in economic, technical, environmental and social terms.

"Standards and standardization activities remain one of the priorities in the nation's effort to increase economic growth and sustainable development," he said.

Mr Darkwa expressed the hope that the celebration of the day would help create greater awareness and usage of standards by the government, private sector and consumers in procurement, trade, production, manufacturing and provision of services.

October 14 each year is set aside as World Standards Day as a means of paying tribute to the collaborative efforts of the thousands of experts worldwide who develop the voluntary technical agreements that are published as international standards.