Inadequate funds hamper fight against counterfeits
Posted Thursday, March 14 2013 at 02:00
UNBS needs resources to crack the whip on illicit trade and manufacturing of inferior goods.
Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has expressed concerns over insufficient funding in the fight against counterfeit and substandard goods that are widely supplied in the market.
The standards body said it was being challenged by limited funding to crack-whip on traders engaging in the illicit trade and manufacturing inferior goods for the market.
The revelation was made by Mr Deus Mubangizi, the manager of UNBS testing laboratories, at the opening of the annual East African Community Proficiency Testing (ECPT) workshop, which brought together standards bodies from Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Burundi, to arrive at a joint initiative in the fight against ‘fake’ goods in the regional markets.
“As a government body, we are constrained by our budget in the effort to fight counterfeits and goods that don’t meet standards,” Mr Mubaginzi said, adding that besides the body’s need to engage security agencies in the effort, there was need to establish more laboratories tasked with sampling of nearly anything presumed unfit for the market; which all largely depend on financial capacity.
“We are drumming for more (financial) support from other stakeholders, although this doesn’t come easily,” Mr Mubangizi noted, at the two-day event which ended on Tuesday with (all) regional bodies raising alarm over the existence of many fake commodities, which they said (some) are made on order from countries like China.
The participants agreed on conformity assessment- an activity concerned with determining directly or indirectly the safety of commodities, which involved inspection, testing and certification.
“This will give confidence to export markets that products conform to the required market standards and boost market reputation of products,” said Mr Phenny Kaviiri, in charge of proficiency testing at UNBS.