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    December 1, 2023

    Highlights from IEC Cairo meetings


    IEC  meeting

    As mentioned in the October issue of this newsletter, IEC’s annual General Meeting was this year organized to take place physically in Cairo, Egypt, at the end of October with representatives of the National Committees of IECs 89 member countries and 85 affiliate countries. Unfortunately, as many National Committees decided to withdraw from participating due to the perceived uncertainty in the region, the physical meetings were cancelled with only a few days’ notice and replaced by digital virtual events.
    As prepaid flights, hotels etc. were not refundable, the editor went to Cairo anyway, and took part as a member in the online meeting of the IEC CAB (Conformity Assessment Board) and later also the Affiliate Countries Forum and Affiliate Round Table meeting.
    The following are amongst the points noted from the discussions during these events: 

    • Establish CAB Task Force for possible conformity assessment services for Artificial Intelligence.
    • The role of conformity assessment (CA) for the United Nations’ SDGs
    • Digital transformation and use of Smart standards.
    • The four IEC CA-systems are growing in various areas, including in services related to the environment/climate.
    • Introduction of Other Recognizing Bodies (ORB) in the IECEE/CB Scheme for authorities in countries without national certification schemes.
    • In developing countries, focus on challenges with off-grid electrification and incentives for growth of small- and micro enterprises.

    PHOTO-2023-10-24-16-09-50While being in Cairo, opportunity was taken to visit the secretariat of AFSEC, the pan-African standardization organization. The purpose was primarily to discuss a proposed survey to map requirements and market access conditions for electrical/ electronic consumer products in about 20 member countries. (The background was a need noted during the editor’s role during 2020-2021 as IECE Ambassador for Conformity Assessment training of the Affiliates). The survey has already been on trial in 4 of the member countries. During the meeting, in which also an AFSEC officer from Kenya took part online, it was agreed to proceed with wide distribution of the survey, and then include also questions about requirements concerning telecom/wireless features, which are separate from electrical safety regulations and often subject to approval by national telecommunication authorities.  

    For further information, please contact the editor


    (The article is based on the notes from the meetings and edited by T.Sollie)

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