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New search engine for laboratory services launched in Colombia

On 6 October, UNIDO and the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism of Colombia (MinComercio) launched Buscalab, a powerful search engine for laboratory services intended to boost the conformity assessment market in the country. The solution, which include more than 2,600 laboratories and 72,000 records of laboratory services, relies on the information from 7 national databases and was developed with the Global Quality and Standards Programme Colombia implemented by UNIDO and Switzerland through the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO).

The event attended by more than 500 participants included participants from Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism of Colombia (MinComercio) and Colombia Productiva, the main national counterparts of the programme, as well as representatives of the Presidency of the Republic, the National Planning Department, SECO office in Colombia, the National Association of Entrepreneurs and the Colombian Association of Conformity Assessment Bodies. Discussion focused on advantages of this tool, which is part of comprehensive support that GQSP Colombia has provided since 2019 for implementation of the National Laboratory Policy in the country.

Among advantages of Buscalab that were highlighted at the event were closing of information gaps between supply and demand of conformity assessment services, centralization and articulation of fragmented information, incorporation of 4.0 technologies, such as machine learning and artificial intelligence, and the fact that Buscalab can serve as a model for digitization of public goods, which is one of the purposes of Colombia in its reactivation path.

"Initiatives such as UNIDO's LabNet and Buscalab are important benchmarks in digitization applied to the quality infrastructure with a demand-driven approach and the way in which information technologies can support development and implementation of laboratory policies" stated Bernardo Calzadilla Sarmiento, Managing Director of UNIDO’s Directorate of Digitalization, Technology and Agri-Business.

For further information contact Juan Pablo Diaz-Castillo (J.Diaz-castillo [at] unido.org (J).Diaz-Castillo [at] unido.org)

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