The ministry of science and technology has taken the decision to outsouring the inspection of mandatory food and non-food items.
As per the shared details, the ministry has released information on its website, however, officials and the experts in the different departments of the ministry shared concern over the plan.
Presently, the quality and standard of more than 160 commodities are mandated for inspection to the Pakistan Standards and Quality Control Authority (PSQCA), which is an attached department of the ministry.
But, under the plan, the private labs and firms would be releasing conformity certificates, licenses and would be marking the commodities once the test is performed. The ministry is to hire consultants for the finalization of the proposals.
As per a ministry official, the outsourcing would be like the shifting of the mandate of the PSQCA and the different departments of the authority would be made redundant.
The verdict of outsourcing the functions of the authority is tantamount to violation of the PSQCA Act, 1996, and the suggested model breaks the different agreements with the international standards units and organizations.
The outsourcing plan has proposed that the task of testing, inspections, and the conformity assessment as per the relevant Pakistan Standards Specifications needs would be made by the third party partnership inspectors in view of the limited technical human resource at the PSQCA.
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