picture of the panel discussion
24.10.2022

Product quality contributes to more resilient supply chains

International experts share their views at the Aid for Trade Global Review 2022

At this year's Aid for Trade Global Review, the Alliance for Product Quality in Africa, together with the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), hosted a panel discussion around the issue of resilient supply chains.

There was consensus in one aspect: product quality contributes to more resilient supply chains. This topic was the focus of the panel discussion "Meeting the Challenge: strengthening the resilience of supply chains" organised by the BMZ together with the Alliance for Product Quality in Africa, as part of Invest for Jobs, on July 28th 2022, within the framework of this year's Aid for Trade Global Review of the World Trade Organisation (WTO). This event is held biennially in Geneva. The high-level meeting of international organisations, policymakers and private sector representatives focuses on how developing countries can use international trade to grow sustainably and fight poverty.

Moderated by Andrea Ulbrich (BMZ Division 112, Trade), the panel discussion focused on current challenges and developments in supply chains and addressed the role of product quality as a possible contribution to improving the prevailing situation. The session took place with participants from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the International Trade Centre (ITC), the Rwanda Standards Board and the Rwanda Private Sector Federation.

In addition to the many challenges concerning supply chains, which were discussed from various perspectives, the speakers also highlighted opportunities that arise from recent developments. For instance, new business opportunities are emerging for African enterprises as they position themselves as alternative suppliers for e.g. European buyers and markets. To benefit from this opportunity, it is important to meet the requirements of international markets - both in terms of basic quality standards and in terms of voluntary sustainability standards on social or environmental aspects. In order to benefit from this opportunity, it is important to meet the requirements of international markets - both in terms of basic quality standards and in terms of voluntary sustainability standards on social or environmental aspects.

It was emphasised how the Alliance for Product Quality in Africa can support African companies in meeting the quality standards demanded by international buyers and in building sustainable relationships with new markets. The services offered include training activities to introduce quality management systems in enterprises and to obtain internationally recognised standards, as well as to strengthen the national quality infrastructure.

The panelists pointed out how supporting African producers and national institutions for quality infrastructure can contribute to more resilient and sustainable supply chains and open up pathways to higher value creation in African economies.

More information on the work of the Alliance for Product Quality in Africa can be found here: https://www.allianceforproduct...

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