Technical Harmonization Committees and Technical Working Groups

Based on the African Standards Harmonisation Model (ASHAM), ARSO harmonises the Regional Standards into African Standards. Towards this, ARSO has developed the ASHAM Harmonisation Procedure Manual (ASHAM – SHPM).

The Harmonisation process is coordinated by the ARSO Technical Management Committee Chaired by the ARSO President.

There are currently 13 broad-based technical harmonisation committees and 58 technical working groups (Work Under this THCs can be accessed in the Following Links with Usernames and Passwords shared by the ARSO Central Secretariat)

Technical Harmonisation Committee / Working Group

SharePoint Access Link

01   ARSO/THC 01, Basic and General Standards

02  ARSO/THC 02, Agriculture and Food Products

ARSO/THC 02-1, WG on Apiculture and Pollination Services

ARSO/THC 02-2, WG on Fisheries and Aquaculture

ARSO/THC 02-3, WG on Milk Products and Dairy Value Chains

ARSO/THC 02-4, WG on Horticulture

ARSO/THC 02-5, WG on Coffee, Cocoa, Tea and Similar Products

ARSO/THC 02-6, WG on Meat, Poultry, Game, Eggs and Related Products

ARSO/THC 02-7, WG on Food Additives, Spices, Culinary Herbs and Condiments

ARSO/THC 02-8, WG on Food Safety (Physical, Chemical, Microbioly, Toxins, Virology, Biotechnology, etc.)

ARSO/THC 02-9, WG on Cereals, Pulses, Oilseeds and Derived and Similar Products

ARSO/THC 02-10, WG on Food Trade (Certification, Packaging, Labelling)

ARSO/THC 02-11, WG on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses

ARSO/THC 02-12, WG on Sugar, Derived and Similar Products

ARSO/THC 02-13, WG on Animal Feeding, Feeds and Feeding Stuffs

ARSO/THC 02-14, WG on Alcoholic and Non-Alcoholic Beverages

ARSO/THC 02-15, WG on Seed and Propagation Materials

ARSO/THC 02-16, WG on Tobacco and Similar Products

ARSO/THC 03, Building and Civil Engineering

ARSO/THC 03-1, WG on Wood and Timber Products

ARSO/THC 03-2, WG on Flooring, Wall finishing and Roofing

ARSO/THC 03-3, WG on Metallic Products for Building and Civil Engineering

ARSO/THC 03-4, WG on Built Environment (Building Codes, Smart, Green, Efficient)

ARSO/THC 03-5, WG on Plastic Pipes, Fittings, Valves, Piping Systems and Ducting Systems

ARSO/THC 03-6, WG on Drainage and Wastewater Engineering

ARSO/THC 03-7, WG on Road, Rail, Air and Water Transport Infrastructure

ARSO/THC 03-8, WG on Building and Construction Materials

ARSO/THC 04, Mechanical Engineering & Metallurgy

ARSO/THC 04-1, WG on Farm Implements and Machinery for Agriculture and Forestry

ARSO/THC 04-2, WG on Utensils, Cutlery, Sanitary Wares, Fittings and Domestic Hardware

ARSO/THC 04-3, WG on Manufacturing and General Engineering Technical Committee

ARSO/THC 05, Chemistry & Chemical Engineering

ARSO/THC 05-1, WG on Surface Active Agents

ARSO/THC 05-2, WG on Agrochemicals

ARSO/THC 05-3, WG on Paper and Paper Products

ARSO/THC 05-4, WG on Petroleum and Petrochemical Products

ARSO/THC 05-5, WG on Organic and Inorganic Chemicals

ARSO/THC 05-6, WG on Paints, varnishes and related products

ARSO/THC 05-7, WG on Cosmetics and related products

ARSO/THC 05-8, WG on Plastics and Related products

ARSO/THC 05-9, WG on Industrial and Medical Gases

ARSO/THC 05-10, WG on Scholastic Materials

ARSO/THC 05-11, WG on Toys, Sports and Leisure Equipment

ARSO/THC 06, Electro-technology

ARSO/THC 06-1, WG on Electronics and Information Technology

ARSO/THC 06-2, WG on Conformity Assessment for Renewable Energy Systems

ARSO/THC 06-3, WG on Small Electrical Power Technologies (Hydropower, Solar, Windpower, Bio-Electric)

ARSO/THC 07, Textiles and Leather

ARSO/THC 07-1, WG on Textiles, Clothes, Garments and Accessories

ARSO/THC 07-2, WG on Leather, Ready-Made Articles, Footwear and Accessories

ARSO/THC 08, Transport and Communication

ARSO/THC 08-1, WG on Transport Services

ARSO/THC 08-2, WG on Transportation of Dangerous Goods and Harmonized Classification and Labelling of Chemicals

ARSO/THC 08-3, WG on Packaging and Freight Containers

ARSO/THC 08-4, WG on Automotive Standards

ARSO/THC 09, Environmental Management

ARSO/THC 09-1, WG on Eco-Labelling and Sustainability Systems

ARSO/THC 09-2, WG on Societal Security (Disaster and Emergency Management)

ARSO/THC 09-3, WG on Drinking Water and Sanitation

ARSO/THC 09-4, WG on Air Quality

ARSO/THC 10, Energy and Natural Resources

ARSO/THC 10-1, WG on Equipment for Petroleum, Petrochemical and Natural Gas Systems

ARSO/THC 10-2, WG on Bioenergy and Biogas

ARSO/THC 10-3, WG on Mining and Mineral Beneficiation

ARSO/THC 10-4, WG on Solar Thermal Systems and Equipment

ARSO/THC 11, Quality Management

ARSO/THC 12, Services

ARSO/THC 12-1, WG on Cosmetology and Wellness

ARSO/THC 12-2, WG on Financial Services

ARSO/THC 12-3, WG on Healthcare, Medical Devices and Equipment

ARSO/THC 12-4, WG on Building and Construction Services

ARSO/THC 13, African Traditional Medicine

Technical Harmonisation Committee Members

The 43rd ARSO Council approved the harmonization of 79 standards within the New Work Items *pdf based on the ARSO ASHAM SHPM Document *pdf.

On the other hand, ARSO is set to harmonise African Standard for Mineral Valuation and African Standard Code of Practice for Uranium Mining.

The first ordinary session of African Union Conference of Ministers Responsible for Mineral Resources Development (CAMRMRD) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in a meeting held on 16th and 17th October 2008, adopted Declaration AU/MIN/CAMRMRD/4(1) on the development and management of Africa’s Mineral Resources which formed the roadmap that will optimize the potential benefits of African mineral resources.

ARSO has taken note of the fact that the mineral resource exploitation in the continent of Africa needs the development of guidelines, standards and code of practice to assist African countries to optimize the potential benefits of their mineral resources.

During the 42nd ARSO Council Meeting held in Abuja, Nigeria on 31st March – 1st April 2011, the ARSO Technical Harmonisation Committees were constituted as shown above, based on the expressed interest of ARSO Members.

ARSO was formed in 1977 with the principal mandate to harmonise African Standards and conformity assessment procedures in order to reduce Technical Barriers to Trade and therefore promote intra African and international Trade as well as enhance the industrialization of Africa. It is envisaged that, within the framework of the African Union and African Union Commission, the Department of Trade and Industry will establish a common policy for harmonization of standards in Africa as laid out in the AUC Strategic plan for 2009 – 2012.

The ARSO Technical Harmonisation Committees will give Africa an impetus towards greater participation in the flow of global trade and boost its own internal trade while taking into consideration preferential systems on bilateral and multilateral basis. With one common standard in all the African countries and every conflicting national standard withdrawn, a product could reach a far wider market with much lower development and testing costs.

Harmonised standards and Common Technical Regulation policies will lead to the much envisaged African Common Market as per the Abuja Treaty of 1991, for goods and services and position Africa in the global economy. The Harmonisation process through the ARSO Standards Harmonisation Model (ASHAM) will foster competitiveness of the African industries, the African Integration and the subsequent African economy in global trading system and thus contribute positively to the welfare of European citizens.

It known that many of African exports, now enjoy, at least in principle, duty-free access to major developed country markets, in particular the European Union (EU), thanks to harmonisation of standards to international standards which has concrete benefits through trade expansion. Therefore efforts to promote African exports of manufactures should be complemented by measures to reduce the cost impacts of product standards, including efforts to harmonise national and RECs standards with international norm.