The Standards and Metrology Institute for Islamic Countries (SMIIC), an affiliated institution of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, held the SMIIC Forum 2012 in Antalya, Republic of Turkey on 8-9 November 2012. Aiming at functioning as a platform to bring experts and professionals from the fields of standardisation, accreditation and metrology together, the SMIIC Forum 2012 gave participants the opportunity to discuss the current situation of these fields in the OIC Member Countries and at the international level. Over 150 attendees from 35 countries including the National Standardisation Bodies (NSB) and relevant national organisations of member countries, and international organisations comprising the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardisation (CENELEC), Standardisation Organisation for the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GSO), International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC), OIC General Secretariat, COMCEC, SESRIC, and ICDT participated in the Forum. Mr. Atilla Karaman, Researcher at the Statistics and Information Department, represented the SESRIC at the Forum.
After the recitation of some verses from the Holy Qur’an, Mr. Hulusi Şentürk, Chairman of the Board of Directors of SMIIC and President of the Turkish Standards Institute (TSE), delivered an opening speech at the Inaugural Session of the Forum. Mr. Şentürk stated in his speech that during two days of the Forum the participants will exchange views and opinions concerning standardisation. Stressing the vital role of standardisation in economic development through facilitation of international trade, Mr. Şentürk pointed out that standardisation enables equality in competition, productivity in manufacturing, convenience in communication between producers and consumers and access to markets. Following Mr. Şentürk, Mr. Metin Eker, General Director of the COMCEC Coordination Office, mentioned in his speech that the number of member countries of SMIIC has increased to 20 after the acceptance of Afghanistan, Egypt and Lebanon into the membership. Highlighting the necessity of cooperation among the OIC Member Countries to remove trade barriers and economic difficulties, Mr. Eker also touched upon the significant role of SMIIC in setting common standards for the Islamic countries.
Following the addresses of the other speakers in the Inaugural Session, the Forum participants listened to the speeches of the representatives of ISO, IEC, CENELEC, GSO, Ministry of Economy of the Republic of Turkey, SASO (Saudi Standards, Metrology and Quality Organisation), and TSE in Working Session 1. The speakers overviewed the significance of standards from both international and national perspectives and emphasised the role of standardisation and accreditation for a sustainable economy. During the Question and Answer Session of the Working Session 1, Mr. Karaman asked the NSBs of participating OIC Member Countries if there is a cooperation between NSBs and National Statistical Offices concerning a cooperation for the collection of data for halal food and products industry and market, and development of a methodology for that purpose. Mr. Karaman also briefly introduced the latest initiative of the OIC Statistical Commission to establish a Working Group on the development of a methodology for halal food/products and invited all relevant Forum participants to take part in the Working Group.
In the Working Session 2, the representatives of the ISO, IEC, CENELEC, ESMA (The Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology, United Arab Emirates), and TSE delivered presentations on the formation of standards nationally and internationally, and their adoption and implementation.
In the Working Session 3 that took part on the second day of the Forum, the representatives of Korean Research Institute of Standards and Science (KRISS), Turkish National Metrology Institute (UME), and Malaysian National Metrology Laboratory (SIRIM) presented the importance of metrology at the international, regional and national levels.
During the Working Session 4, the presenters from the UME and Jordan National Metrology Institute (JNMI) took the floor to discuss on the SMIIC and Metrology.
The representatives of ILAC, Turkish Accreditation Agency (TURKAK), and National Accreditation Committee Indonesia (KAN) shed a light on the issues concerning accreditation at international, regional and national levels in the Working Session 5.
In the Working Session 6 of the Forum, the speakers from the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM), TURKAK, Higher Council of the Religious Affairs of the Republic of Turkey, Uludağ University – Turkey, and Pakistan National Accreditation Council (PNAC) discussed the Halal Standards Accreditation mechanism with a focus on the OIC/SMIIC Halal Standards Series.
Please visit http://www.smiic.org/announcements/198/smiic-forum-2012 for more information on the SMIIC Forum 2012.