Describes standards, identifies the national standards, accreditation bodies, and lists the national testing organization(s) and conformity assessment bodies.
TT has a mix of voluntary and compulsory standards, many of which are market driven. Of the 370 standards in use, 88 are compulsory and can be viewed here: http://ttstandards.ttbs.org.tt/. The TT Bureau of Standards (TTBS) is responsible for all standards related to products and services except those pertaining to food, drugs, cosmetics, and medical devices, for which the Chemistry, Food and Drug Division of the Ministry of Health sets standards. The TTBS uses the ISO 9000 series of standards and is a member of the International Organization for Standardization. The annual national standards work plan is not public. Parties that do not have a manufacturing presence in TT can participate in standards development work by the TTBS.
The TTBS is the national standards body and operates under the guidance of the Ministry of Trade and Industry. The TTBS is also the national quality certifying body and the national laboratory accrediting body. The TTBS is a member of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), the Caribbean Common Market Standards Council (CCMSC), and the Pan American Standards Commission (COPANT). The TTBS adopts international standards and bases local standards on international standards where possible. Products meeting U.S. and U.K standards are generally accepted. Participation in national standards development is open to all interested parties.
Testing, Inspection and Certification
The TTBS implementation division monitors both imported and locally manufactured products for compliance with compulsory standards. Most products enter freely the market.
The products presently inspected in TT are:
- Garment and textiles
- Electrical and electronic products
- Lead acid starter batteries for automobiles
Products are inspected at the three primary ports of entry:
- Point Lisas
- Port of Spain
- Piarco Airport
Testing, Inspection and Certification
The TTBS testing division has five laboratories equipped to service the industrial and manufacturing sectors. Testing services are provided in the following categories: electrical, chemical, fiber, and materials.
Publication of Technical Regulations
The TT Gazette is the national gazette. All stakeholders can comment on a standard during the TTBS public comment period prior to finalization of the standard. The public can submit comments for 30 days on voluntary standards, beginning with the first day the advertisement appears in the print media. The public has 60 days to comment on compulsory standards. The TTBS advertises the draft standard on its website and in the daily newspaper three times in a one-week period. TT does not maintain an annual regulatory agenda. There are no newly proposed regulations that will impact U.S. products in 2021.
Use ePing to review proposed technical regulations and conformity assessment procedures
The ePing SPS&TBT platform (https://epingalert.org/), or “ePing”, provides access to notifications made by WTO Members under the Agreements on Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (SPS) and Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT), distributed by the WTO from January 16, 1995 to present. ePing is available to all stakeholders free of charge and does not require registration unless the user wishes to receive customized e-mail alerts. Use it to browse notifications on past as well as new draft and updated product regulations, food safety and animal and plant health standards and regulations, find information on trade concerns discussed in the WTO SPS and TBT Committees, locate information on SPS/TBT Enquiry Points and notification authorities, and to follow and review current and past notifications concerning regulatory actions on products, packaging, labeling, food safety and animal and plant health measures in markets of interest.
Notify U.S., operated and maintained by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) since 2003 to distribute and provide access to notifications (and associated draft texts) made under the WTO TBT Agreement for US stakeholders, has reached its end of life. Per obligation under the TBT Agreement, each WTO Member operates a national TBT (and an SPS) Enquiry Point. National TBT Enquiry Points are authorized to accept comments and official communications from other national TBT Enquiry Points, which are NOT part of the WTO or the WTO Secretariat. All comment submissions from U.S. stakeholders, including businesses, trade associations, U.S domiciled standards development organizations and conformity assessment bodies, consumers, or U.S. government agencies on notifications to the WTO TBT Committee should be sent directly to the USA WTO TBT Inquiry Point. Refer to the comment guidance at https://tsapps.nist.gov/notifyus/data/guidance/guidance.cfm for further information.
TT Bureau of Standards
1-2 Century Drive
Trincity Industrial Estate, Macoya
Tel: (868) 662-8827
Fax: (868) 663-4335
U.S. Embassy Port of Spain Economic and Commercial Unit
Valerie A. Laboy, Economic and Commercial Officer
Standards Attache for Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean
U.S. Embassy Mexico City