Morocco formalises its membership in ARSO

The AfCFTA Agreement, for which, the Kingdom of Morocco is a signatory and ratifying Sate Party, calls on all State parties, under the TBT Annex 6, article 6, f, to promote membership, liaison and participation in the work of ISO, IEC, ARSO, AFSEC and similar international and regional standardisation organisations. 

The AfCFTA Agreement under TBT Annex 6, Article 4, sets to (a) facilitate intra-African trade through cooperation in the areas of standards, technical regulation, conformity assessment, accreditation and metrology; and urges State parties, under Article 5, to cooperate in the development and implementation of standards, technical regulations, conformity assessment procedures, accreditation, metrology, capacity building and enforcement activities in order to facilitate trade within the AfCFTA, and as well, under Article 6 (b), to promote the adoption of standards developed by the ARSO and the AFSEC. It is acknowledged that seamless flow of goods and services under the AfCFTA requires harmonised standards and Conformity Assessment. Already, in Africa, the volume and complexity of technical regulations and the variation in certification, testing, inspection practices and standards used by different African countries and RECs continue to pose an impediment to intra-African trade and cooperation among African countries in the harmonisation the African standards, by Experts from all African countries, remains a key requirement, within the AfCFTA Agreement.

Having signed the ARSO Membership Documents, including the ARSO Membership Instrument of Accession and the ARSO Constitution ratification form in February 2021, the Kingdom of Morocco has finally completed all requirement as ARSO member on 17th March 2021. This comes at a crucial moment when the African countries have started real trade with each other, on 1st January 2021, under the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Agreement.

The Kingdom of Morocco will formally be admitted to the ARSO Membership during the 26th ARSO General Assembly scheduled for 16th June 2021. The Total Membership of ARSO currently standards at 39 African Countries, and all African Union are expected to attain ARSO membership as provided by the AfCFTA agreement TBT annex 6