Senior officials from 21 member economies of the Asia–Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum convened in Indonesia on January 27-28 to attend APEC’s sub-committee on Standards and Conformance (SCSC).

The meeting was part of the first 2013 APEC Senior Officials Meeting (SOM) and related meetings.

The officials discussed national standards, and their harmonisation, to boost trade and investment in the region.

They also debated how to create favourable conditions that will facilitate trade through the Collective Action Plan.

The participants defined priority areas to match national standards to international standards in electrical and electronic products, food labelling and rubber-made products. They agreed to enhance transparency and mutual recognition of national standard certificates that are approved by regional organisations.

Attention was also paid to the Technical Infrastructure Development of standards and measure to reduce the gap in standardisation and conformance capacity between developing and developed countries.

As the host of the 2013 APEC Summit scheduled for October in Bali , Indonesia proposed two initiatives to speed up the multilateral recognition of product certification.

The initiatives are expected to be reviewed at SCSC meetings scheduled for April and June.-VNA