In an effort to promote an excellent business relationship, the Botswana Bureau of Standards (BOBS) and Botswana Export Development and Investment Authority (BEDIA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to promote mutual understanding for the expansion of trade and investment and other forms of economic cooperation between the two entities.
The objectives of the MoU are to design standardized process, policies and procedures of referral for clients to and from both parties consistent with the MoU.
BEDIA acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Lameck Nthekelang said the MoU will assist in identifying and delivering appropriate entrepreneurship and skills training, monitoring and mentoring for entrepreneurs and enterprises.
Nthekelang further said that the other objectives are for joint cooperation in undertaking of export and investment promotion activities. He stated that the agreement will also assist in organizing joint training programs, conferences and meetings in various specialties taking into account the need to increase awareness of both party’s services in identified priority export sector.
“Botswana offers various incentives crucial to business development and they should be of maximum use and benefit. BEDIA is designed to assist in developing international market entry strategies that identify the objectives, resources or policies that will in turn assist participating companies develop their sustainable international business focus,” said Nthekelang.
He said there is growth in the establishment of new companies that contribute to sustainable development in the country.
BOBS Managing Director, Masego Marobela, said the main features of the MoU are enterprise identification, enterprise development and client referrals. Marobela said the parties will help each other on a yearly basis to identify 15 entrepreneurs and enterprises that could be assisted and developed, so that their products at least comply with international standards.
“Global acceptance of accredited certificates is paramount as it provides assurance and confidence that traded products and services, meet national legal and regulatory requirement,” said Marobela
She further stated that the support of free movement of products and services by eliminating technical barriers to trade is important and also a conducive environment for a smooth trade flow is very important. She highlighted that accreditation is now increasingly accepted as the most transparent, non discriminatory mechanism to assure technical competence amongst trading partners.
Marobela revealed that BOBS is a full member of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the national contact point for all SADC programs on Standardization and Quality Assurance. She further added that BOBS is the national World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade (WTO-TBT) enquiry point for Botswana.