From November 14 to 18, the Department of Commerce, through funding provided by the Office of Insular Affairs, will be conducting multi-jurisdictional training to increase efforts for the standardization of weights and measurements regionally.
According to Secretary of Commerce Mark Rabauliman, multi-jurisdictional enforcement and compliance capacity building for weights and measurements will ensure equitable economic activity.
“With the funding provided by OIA, this will enable a multi-jurisdictional training that will encourage and promote uniform package inspection procedures from various inspection techniques to proper conduct of packaged goods verification procedures,” Rabauliman said.
Secretary Rabauliman shared that the capacity building for regional weights and measurements will not only be for the CNMI but for the whole Micronesian Region. Developing standardization across the region and showcasing new methods, he says, will improve department efficiency and fairness in commercial transactions for merchants and consumers.
Governor Ralph DLG. Torres earlier this year expressed that the primary objective is to meet the requirements of the weights and measures standards and regulations established by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology.
“With the increased economic activity, accurate weights and measurements across the board is a priority. The Department of Interior noted that the CNMI estimates $3 million in annual losses to fraud due to inaccurate weights and measurements to more than 6,000 40-foot containers arrive at the Saipan seaport each year and all efforts to decrease these losses and prevent fraud will positively impact our community and our regional partners,” Torres said.
Secretary Rabauliman added that in addition to this training, the Department of Commerce, through a memorandum of agreement with Utah Department of Agriculture & Food, Division of Regulatory Services (UDAF) aims to build capacity of regional stakeholders through the acquisition of professional development on gravimeter package inspections based on National Institute of Standards and Technology to allow stakeholders to receive the latest training on US standards, test procedures and proper equipment to support local regulation compliance.
Rabauliman states that CNMI Department of Commerce from Saipan, Tinian and Rota will be participating, along with stakeholders from the CNMI Department of Finance, Government of Guam weights and measurements representatives, the Marshall Islands, Palau, and the Federated States of Micronesia.