The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has disclosed plans to launch Product Authentication Mark (PAM) to curb the influx of substandard imported goods into the country.
Speaking at a stakeholders sensitisation forum on PAM in Lagos, the director general, SON, Mallam Farouk Salim, stated that, PAM was specifically developed to checkmate imported goods into the country.
According to him, imported goods account for over 80 per cent of substandard goods into the country.
The SON boss added that the introduction of PAM is a declaration of war against substandard goods while also reaffirming the agency’s zero tolerance for substandard goods.
He, however, urged local manufacturers to key into the initiative, pointing out that, it is the only way to increase consumers’ confidence, profitability and market share.
He also said, plans are underway to upgrade the SON Act, pointing out that, there is going to be a public hearing in the National Assembly with hopes that the bill is passed and signed by Mr. President or the new administration.
In the same vein, the director, Product Certification, SON, Engr. Onucheyo Enebi, said the introduction of PAM became necessary because the agency has been inundated with complaints from consumers over the influx of substandard goods into the country.
According to him,”we have come to realise that customers after buying products do not get value for their money, so this initiative will give the buyers opportunities to confirm the authenticity of the product before even paying for it. The mark has over 10 elements in it that it detects if a product is authentic or not, so the moment you scan with your QR code, all information about the product would be displayed
“I want to encourage Nigerians that whenever they scan a product and you realise that the product is substandard, please do not keep quiet, but raise an alarm so that the relevant agencies can carry out an enforcement exercise,” he advised.
Similarly, the president, MAN, Otunba Meshioye Francis represented by the director, Corporate Services Division, Ambrose Oruche, said MAN has thrown its full weight behind SON’s move to introduce PAM in its bid to checkmate the influx of substandard goods into the country.
He said, the move is a welcome development, especially, at a time when most economies of the world are operating a borderless trade, stressing that , the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) on the cards, PAM would go a long way to help prevent Nigerian from being a dumping ground for inferior goods.