Global Quality and Standards Programme (GQSP)
The Global Quality and Standards Programme (GQSP) implemented with UNIDO addresses challenges faced by exporters from developing countries, in particular small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) to meet and prove conformity with market entry requirements/standards, technical regulations and market requirements.
Despite the opportunities induced by trade liberalisation and the efforts made by developing countries to strengthen integration into the world trade system, many developing and middle-income countries have not been able to substantially increase their access to global markets. One major reason is that the reduction of tariff levels coincided with an increased use of standards, technical regulations and market requirements, resulting in non-tarrif barriers to trade (NTB).
Since the late 1990’s international trade and its negotiations have significantly shifted from tariffs to NTBs, which are very diverse and difficult to quantify. NTB’s are not new to trade. However, globalised trade has seen a proliferation of these as a response to increased demand for safety and quality of products, as well as increasing public concern for social, environmental and sustainability issues. Exporters from developing countries, in particular SMEs, face substantial challenges to meet and prove conformity with standards, technical regulations and market requirements.
SECO, together with UNIDO, has a long-standing experience in addressing competitiveness through stronger compliance with international standards in numerous countries. This programme aims at channelling SECO's interventions on trade standards compliance within one tool, thus reinforcing coherence and developing global solutions for common challenges by also including Swiss expertise.
Outcome 1: Technical competence and sustainability of the National Quality Infrastructure System is enhanced. Institutional strengthening of key institutions and relevant public-private support institutions through capacity building, use of best practices, skills development, and implementation of management systems to ensure quality and international recognition of their services.
Outcome 2: SME compliance with international standards and technical regulations is enhanced. Improving of compliance capacity through specialised training, capacity building and preparation for certification, strengthening of cluster networks and quality consortia as well as relevant support institutions.
Outcome 3: Promote a culture for quality. Advocacy, up-scaling of knowledge dissemination, and advice for informed policy decisions on standards compliance and support for policy development.
Output 1.1: In-depth analysis of QI and action plans prepared
Output 1.2: Technical competence of the QI at the institutional level strengthened
Output 1.3: Technical competences of the QI service providers strengthened.
Output 2.1: Analysis/assessment to identify relevant export markets requirements (technical regulations and standards) conducted.
Output 2.2: Technical assistance to SME’s to enhance compliance capacity provided.
Output 2.3: Training to SME to enhance compliance capacity provided.
Output 3.1: Advice for informed policy decision making on standards compliance and support for policy development provided
Output 3.2: Activities to raise quality awareness developed
Results from previous phases:
SECO and UNIDO have both been active in the area of trade standards compliance for over 15 years, supporting partner countries to increase their international competitiveness through stronger compliance with international standards. These intervention were, however, not linked. Activities were focusing at country level, with little exchange of what the lessons, success and failure factors within the different projects were. Although in many cases the issues addressed and instruments developed were similar, they were not fed into the design of global public goods UNIDO was leading. The Global Standards and Quality Programme will address the problems arising from this country-silo approach by consolidating WEHU’s interventions on trade standards compliance within one tool, thus reinforcing coherence and developing global solutions for common challenges, while allowing flexibility for needs-specific interventions at country-level.
|Directorate/federal office responsible||
|Budget||Current phase Swiss budget CHF 18’150’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF 0 Budget inclusive project partner CHF 18’150’000|
|Project phases||Phase 2 01.11.2022 - 31.10.2027 (Current phase) Phase 1 01.11.2017 - 30.11.2023 (Current phase)|