Also in attendance was staff from the MTICM representing the IT, trade, legal, and communication sections. The DSQA Director requested this training activity in order to integrate understanding and functionality of the NEP across all of the sections of the Ministry.
The NEP training for Lesotho is a significant part of the Trade Hub’s technical assistance and capacity building program for Lesotho under the USAID Partnership for Trade Facilitation (PTF) Standards Alliance Program. The program improves the effectiveness of NEPs and enhances the standardization process in line with the World Trade Organization (WTO) Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Agreement.
The IT equipment for the NEP purchased by the Trade Hub includes computers, a printer, and a server as well as desks and chairs. During the training, the Trade Hub assisted the IT Department in setting-up and testing the IT equipment. An email address specifically for the NEP was established and recommendations were made to DSQA management on how to enhance the NEP’s functionalities.
An opening ceremony organized by the Trade Hub with US Embassy and USAID participation will be held in Maseru on November 18, 2014 to formally launch the Lesotho NEP. The event will be followed by awareness building seminars for stakeholders highlighting the importance of the NEP scheduled for November 19 in Mafeteng and November 20 in Leribe.