The 39th ISO COPOLCO Plenary Meeting with the theme ‘Road Safety by Design’ officially got underway yesterday at prestigious Pullman Hotel in Kuala Lumpur. The event, which will close on 18 May, welcomed more than 200 consumer representatives from approximately 80 ISO member countries. The special guest of the 39th ISO COPOLCO was Malaysia’s Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation YB Datuk Seri Panglima Wilfred Madius Tangau, who also delivered a speech before officially opening the four-day event.
Among the key factors he touched on are the development of 252 Malaysian Standards (MS) by the Industrial Standard Committee of Transport and its Technical Committees with products such as helmets, new pneumatic tyres and airbags, already having their related MS. “Of the 252 MS, 17 standards have been made mandatory by both regulators. Products complying with mandatory standards definitely helps consumers distinguish quality and safety of the products through certification marks and labelling recognised by the respective regulators, said YB Datuk Seri Panglima Wilfred.
“Malaysia is also an active member of ISO Technical Committee 22 on Road Vehicles and Technical Committee 241 on Road Traffic Management Systems. These involvements are in line with The Road Safety Plan of Malaysia 2014 – 2020, which aims to minimise road accidents, injuries and fatalities by 2020,” he added.
The Director General of the Department of Standards Malaysia, YB Datuk Fadilah Baharin was also present, and delivered the opening remarks of the 39th ISO COPOLCO. IPEC Bureau, represented by Chief Executive Officer Dr Juliana Lim and her team, is one of the sponsors of this event and was also invited to the moderated dialogue session on day one, stressing on “The Role and Relevance of ISO Standards in Facilitating Trade for Southeast Asia” which is crucial to drive ASEAN towards greater standards integration and adopting best practises.
YB Datuk Fadilah, YB Datuk Ravidran Palaniappan – Former Senior Director of ASEAN Economic Cooperation, Ministry of International Trade and Industry, Malaysia and Mr John Walter – President-elect of ISO were the distinguished panellists at this dialogue session, which was moderated by Dr Anni Mitin – Executive Director of Southeast Asian Council for Food Security and Fair Trade and Vice President of the Malaysian Association of Standards Users. It was followed by Capacity Building Workshops and a Task Group session.
The dialogue session was attended by participants from various industry sectors, regulators, certification bodies, laboratory service providers, consumer representatives and other delegates of the 39th ISO COPOLCO. Discussions centred around the facts, realities and myths surrounding the emergence or application of standards to facilitate trade. A point of interest was the role and relevance of ISO standards to help business and consumers in Southeast Asia which continues to be pertinent after 70 years of the ISO establishment.