Official: Aim of Apec is to reduce trade barriers

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THE country, as much as possible, wants Information Communication and Technology (ICT) materials to enter the PNG market, straight from the producer to the shelves, an official says.
George Alokaka, principal engineer ICT standards from the National Information Communication Technology Authority (Nicta), said this yesterday during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) telecommunication working group meeting in Port Moresby.
The purpose of Apec is to reduce barriers to trade and Nicta, on behalf of PNG, wants to ensure that ICT equipment like phones and radio telecommunications will not have to go through some kind of trade impediments like tests, he said.
“Right now they are going through some tests that we do at Nicta. We are trying to avoid that so trade of ICT equipment can flow from the manufacturer to the importer here in PNG, basically right now the system is not that fast,” Alokaka said.
“The companies, they are losing money, so to promote trade and to bring in ICT equipment, we need to engage MRA (Mutual Recognition Agreement) and establish.
“Another problem is this, we are having a lot of illegal ICT equipment in PNG. With MRA, everything will be standardised,”
“Right now we are having some sub standards coming in and many people are complaining.”
Alokaka said through the MRA, PNG could get its money was worth.
“In MRA terms, we try to do test once and use everywhere. At the moment, if equipment come in, it has to come through Nicta, Nicta has to test it first before it goes to the importer, to the shelves, so that it in itself is an impediment.”

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