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The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has pledged to increase collaboration with the Rubber Research Institute of Nigeria (RRIN) to revamp the Nigerian Rubber Industry through standardization and contribute to the Nation’s economic growth.

The Director General/ Chief Executive Officer (DG/CE) of SON, Mallam Farouk Salim, stated this during a courtesy visit by the Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer (ED/CEO) of the Rubber Research Institute of Nigeria (RRIN), Dr. Lelia .N. Dongo to the Standards Organisation of Nigeria’s (SON) Corporate Headquarters in Abuja recently.

While expressing his delight to receive the RRIN Management, the Director General of SON, represented by the Chief of Staff to the DG, Prof. Olobayo Kunle, noted that natural rubber production is considered one of the most profitable agro–industrial ventures. He explained that if re–positioned, this capital and labour–intensive industry can create wealth, enhance the non–oil sector forex earnings, and reduce unemployment, crime, and insecurity.

According to Salim, rubber as an internationally traded commodity is in high demand worldwide and, where adequately invested, can provide a tremendous boost to the national economy.

Appreciating the Director General for hosting them, the Executive Director RRIN noted that her Institute has a primary mandate to conduct research and development on rubber and other latex-producing plants of economic importance and the quality improvement of Natural Rubber as an industrial raw material. She explained that the institute’s specific challenges necessitate increased synergy between SON and the institute.

She stressed the need for collaboration in developing standards, certification, and capacity building. She reminded the SON management that there have always been remarkable collaborations between SON and RRIN, particularly during the drafting and formulation processes for the Nigerian Industrial Standards (NIS) for Raw and Processed Natural Rubber.

She reiterated the importance of increased collaboration between both Organisations to explore possible opportunities to improve Nigeria’s rubber industry.

In his response, Salim stated that SON’s primary responsibility is to ensure economic growth, facilitate trade and encourage local production through standardization. He pledged the commitment of SON to increased synergy, adding that both agencies could benefit from each other’s expertise, experience, and wealth of knowledge.

He invited the institute to undertake a facility tour of SON’s laboratories, explaining that SON’s laboratories are of world–class standard and encouraging the institute to utilize its services. He appealed to the Institute to request the standards they require for elaboration and to bring to SON’s notice existing standards that need to be reviewed. He explained that the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) requires that standards are reviewed periodically to ensure that the standards stay relevant to changing stakeholders’ expectations and technology developments.

He assured the Executive Director of SON’s willingness to collaborate, stressing that since SON has regulatory powers, it can assist the institute in enforcement areas. The Chief Executives agreed that both Organisations would work out the modalities for engagement and collaboration.

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