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Conformance infrastructure up for discussion

9 August 2006

Standards and conformance infrastructure up for discussion

Commerce Minister Lianne Dalziel has released a discussion document on the review of New Zealand’s standards and conformance infrastructure.

“The standards and conformance infrastructure has already been found to be performing well, but by fine-tuning the infrastructure, and by getting our regulatory frameworks right, we will make a significant contribution to achieving the government’s economic transformation objectives”, Lianne Dalziel said.

The discussion document outlines potential areas for improvement. The government is seeking submissions from key stakeholders, including regulators, businesses and consumers.

The standards and conformance infrastructure is made up of the agencies responsible for developing consensus-based standards, accreditation of testing and inspection bodies, and ensuring uniform units of measurement (eg Standards New Zealand, International Accreditation New Zealand, and the Measurement Standards Laboratory of Industrial Research Ltd).

“Our standards and conformance infrastructure supports the government in managing health, safety and environmental risks. It is also important to business to facilitate innovation and economic development as well as international trade.”

In releasing the Ministry of Economic Development's discussion document, Lianne Dalziel said the review would focus on the:

- governance and resourcing of the infrastructure;
- accessibility of the infrastructure to business and regulators;
- use of the infrastructure to promote innovation and quality improvements in New Zealand firms; and
- use of the standards to deliver improved regulatory outcomes.

“The availability of a sound and efficient New Zealand infrastructure is essential for taking New Zealand’s outwardly looking, globally competitive firms to the world”, Lianne Dalziel said.

The discussion document, Standards, Accreditation and Measurement: Supporting Our Economy is available at: www.med.govt.nz/sc-tbt/infr/review/. Submissions close on November 24.

ENDS

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