Document Type Doctoral Thesis Author Steyn, Elsabe Jaatjie esteyn@ thedti.gov.za URN etd-09252010-134517 Document Title A public policy review of technical regulatory reform : the case for the African continent Degree PhD Department Public Management and Administration Supervisor
Advisor Name Title Dr K B Moeti Supervisor Prof E J van Rooyen Supervisor Keywords
- technical regulatory reform
- public policy review
Date 2010-09-01 Availability unrestricted AbstractTariff and non-tariff barriers to trade are measures that are put in place in a country to which an exporter wants to export to. These barriers make it difficult for a new manufacturer to export their products. These measures may be considered undesirable in the context of world trade, because they restrict the flow of goods and are detrimental to the consumer because they drive prices up.
The Uruguay Round of multilateral trade negotiations significantly reduced tariff barriers to trade. During the same round, the World Trade Organisation Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade was negotiated with a view to ensure that countries use technical regulations (non- tariff barriers) for no other purpose than to protect the health and safety of the public and the environment. Many of the developing countries have not yet been able to take full advantage of this agreement.
It is often difficult and costly for exporters from developing countries to meet the technical requirements of standards and technical regulations and to provide evidence of compliance. This stems from a lack of resources available to developing countries to participate and influence the work of international standards-setting bodies serving as a basis for technical regulation. The absence of internationally recognised national infrastructure for standardisation, accreditation and metrology also prevents acceptance of African products in export markets.
Various regions such as Asia and Europe have initiated technical regulatory reforms to align their technical regulations with the requirements of the World Trade Organisation requirements and to establish appropriate technical institutions. These reforms are also expected to assist member countries to gain a competitive edge in global trade ensuring increased gains from trade liberalisation initiatives which provide fair market access for goods and services.
Africa appears to be lagging behind the abovementioned regions. The current technical regulatory system in Africa is still too inefficient and ineffective to position African countries competitively. The technical institutions are underdeveloped and under funded and can not support market assess and thus economic development.
It is in this context that this study is conducted to explore the technical regulatory framework in Africa against the background of reforms in Asia and Europe with a view of providing public policy recommendations for the establishment of an African technical regulatory system supported by appropriate institutional capacity that may expedite economic recovery for the continent.
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Please cite as follows:
Steyn, EJ 2010, A public policy review of technical regulatory reform : the case for the African continent, PhD thesis, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-09252010-134517/ >
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