Reform of the quality law in Costa Rica

Central American success model

Costa Rica is a small, innovative country in Central America. Long ago, the government decided to abstain from having an army and instead invested in environmental protection and technological innovation.[1] Costa Rica has evolved from a developing country to an industrialised economy. In May 2020, it became the 38thmember of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). [2]

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Quality Infrastructure 4.0

The Fourth Industrial Revolution

We are in the midst of a fundamental transformation that will radically change the way we live, work and interact with each other. This transformation began before COVID-19 but has accelerated through the pandemic. Klaus Schwab, the founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum, speaks in this context of a “Fourth Industrial Revolution”, which will be in its scale, scope and complexity a transformation, unlike anything humanity has ever experienced. Although we do not know yet precisely how it will unfold, the expected changes must be integrated comprehensively and inclusively (Schwab 2017).

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Is market power a problem for conformity assessment?

Testing, Inspection and Certification (TIC)

The Testing, Inspection and Certification (TIC) sector consists of Conformity Assessment Bodies (CAB) who provide services ranging from auditing and inspection to testing, verification, quality assurance and certification. The specificity of the functions of the TIC sector is that it is independent of the person or entity providing the object, and of user interests in the object. We therefore also speak of third-party conformity assessment.

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The National Quality Law of Costa Rica

Quality Infrastructure fulfils sovereign tasks 

The Quality Infrastructure is organised at the national level. Therefore, we speak of a National Quality System (NQS) or National Quality Infrastructure (NQI). Most countries in the world today have a National Metrology Institute (NMI), a National Standards Institute (NSI) and a National Accreditation Body (NAB). Each of these institutions requires a legal framework because they act in the public interest. In some cases, the Quality Infrastructure institutions even assume sovereign tasks.

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