asked the Secretary of State for Trade what proposals he has to implement the consultative document "A National Strategy for Quality"
The Government have been developing three main lines aimed at improving the quality of British products: supplier assessment; testing and certification; and education and training. On supplier assessment, a register of assessed firms is under preparation and this will help to reduce unnecessary multiple assessements. On testing, the national laboratory accreditation scheme was launched by the Minister of State, Department of Industry in October. On certification, draft guidelines for Government recognition of certification bodies have been sent to 400 trade associations: they have been asked to comment by the end of November. On education and training, discussions are being held with professional institutions and educational establishments to improve arrangements for education, training and dissemination of information on quality matters.
asked the Secretary of State for Trade what discussions he has had with the Institute of Quality Assurance and the British Quality Association following the publication of the document "A National Strategy for Quality".
Discussions have taken place with the Institute of Quality Assurance and the National Council of Quality and Reliability on the development of a focal point for national activities in the field of quality. Out of these has emerged the British Quality Association which came into existence in April this year. My Department is represented on the board of management of this new body.