The Ghana Standard Authority (GSA) yesterday inaugurated a multi-stakeholder technical committee to formulate international framework for the automobile industry.
The move is to help ensure that vehicles used in the country are of high standard.
The 43-member committee include representatives of the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority(DVLA), the academia, vehicle manufacturing companies, Ghana Auto Dealers, the Auto Parts Dealers Association, the Suame Magazine, the Customs Excise and Preventive Service (CEPS) of the Ghana Revenue Authority, the National Roads Safety Commission, the Ghana Institution of Engineers and GSA.
The committee is expected to play a leading role towards the establishment of a national vehicle homologation programme for the country’s automobile industry.
The Director-General of GSA, Professor Alex Dodoo, inaugurating the team, urged them to help the country to develop the standards before the vehicle assembly industry takes-off.
According to him, vehicle assembly was a serious business that must not be toyed with hence the need to set standards to inject sanity in the business,” he added.
Professor Dodoo said, the GSA was working feverishly to finalise the Ghana Automotive Standard in line with international standards in relation to conditions in the country adding that “Ghana recently signed a Memoranda of Understanding (MOU), with five global vehicle manufacturing companies namely Nissan, Suzuki, Sinotruck and Volkswagen, to establish assembly plants to create jobs for the people.”
He said the government expected those plants to begin operations this year, hence the desire to have the automobile policy to regulate the industry.
“Government’s agenda for the industry is on course and the GSA would play a leading role to ensure issues of quality and safety of the vehicles are guaranteed to encourage foreign direct investment because it was mandatory to get the homologation approval to export automobile products or components,” he explained.
The Director-General urged the committee to come out with the draft standard by the end of the week for stakeholder and public input and discussion.
Professor Dodoo indicated that by the time the first vehicle was manufactured, the producer should know “what standards are expected for the country and the West African sub-region”.
The objectives of the vehicle homologation are to ensure safety of roads users and vehicle owners by protecting them against unfavourable climatic conditions, vehicle theft and cloning.
BY LAWRENCE VOMAFA- AKPALU