Uganda is now able to test the quality of medical-related supplies, after receiving equipment to perform this task from the Danish government through Trademark East Africa.
The multi-purpose equipment worth Shs 300 million can test the quality of face masks, both medical and non-medical, clinical gowns and suits, sanitizers as well as other products like alcohol, and juice quality.
The availability of this equipment has enabled the nation’s quality assurance agency UNBS to ascertain the quality of such products both locally made as well as those imported, which has not been the case before.
Nicholaj Hejberg Petersen the Danish ambassador to Uganda, while speaking at the launch of this equipment at the UNBS headquarters in Kampala, said that since UNBS is a crucial institution to foster growth and trade and good quality in Uganda, it is necessary to support it through providing this equipment for its growth.
He added that this is also in line with the Covid-19 assistance the Danish government has always extended to Uganda in its efforts to fight the pandemic, and this will ensure that all the Covid related supplies are of the right quality.
According to David Livingstone Ebiru, the UNBS executive director, this equipment will help support the health and safety of Ugandans, especially in the Covid-19 preventive supplies into which many Ugandans have invested.
UNBS will henceforth be able to undertake quality assurance locally unlike before when the ministry of health was taking simple abroad for testing.
He encouraged Ugandan investors to expand to other medical supplies since now that UNBS laboratories can support them in ensuring the quality of their products.
“These items we are testing are not limited to the prevalence of Covid-19, they can be used for many other purposes, apart from testing sanitizers, as we are also testing alcohol so whether Covid is here or not the equipment will be useful to facilitate trade,” Ebiru explained.
Zackery Kalega the commissioner of internal trade at the ministry of trade and cooperatives, says that this is an important milestone that will improve Uganda’s exports within the region as it will address the quality issue which has been critical over the country’s products.
Anna Nambooze the Trademark country director Uganda and South Sudan, says during these Covid-19 times, it is crucial to make sure that trade doesn’t stop, that is why Trademark had to design an intervention to ensure the testing capacity for supplies.
She adds that this equipment is facilitating trade since it reduces the cost of testing such medical supplies, as well as reducing the importations of the same and this improves Uganda’s balance of trade.