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  • Persons breaching stipulations under the Weights and Measures (Amendment) Act, 2015, will now be fined up to $1 million under the revised legislation, which was passed with two amendments in the Senate on Friday, September 25.
  • The Act, which was debated and approved in the House of Representatives earlier this month, establishes standard mechanisms for weighing and measuring equipment, and imposes penalties for non-conformity.
  • Justice Minister, Senator the Hon. Mark Golding, who piloted the Bill in the Upper House, said the amendments are intended to safeguard consumers by ensuring the delivery of a consistently high standard of products and services.

Persons breaching stipulations under the Weights and Measures (Amendment) Act, 2015, will now be fined up to $1 million under the revised legislation, which was passed with two amendments in the Senate on Friday, September 25.

The Act, which was debated and approved in the House of Representatives earlier this month, establishes standard mechanisms for weighing and measuring equipment, and imposes penalties for non-conformity.

Under the new legislation, Section Two of the Principal Act has been amended to significantly increase the original maximum fine of $2,000, which can be imposed where the offender uses for trade, is party to, or is in possession of any weighing or measuring equipment deemed false or defective.

The industries expected to be impacted by the new regime include: retail food sales; petroleum products; transportation; chemicals; and electricity.

It is anticipated that the amendments will foster better regulatory practice and strengthen commerce in these and other areas.

Justice Minister, Senator the Hon. Mark Golding, who piloted the Bill in the Upper House, said the amendments are intended to safeguard consumers by ensuring the delivery of a consistently high standard of products and services.

“The existence of a proper functioning regime for ensuring…compliance holds great significance as we seek to ensure an economy that can grow and sustain investment,” he said.

Senator Golding noted that the regime is integral to the National Quality Infrastructure which underpins the development of commerce and trade, deemed pivotal in realizing the Government’s growth agenda for Jamaica.

Additionally, he contended that: “we have to ensure that…(the) system…promotes uniformity in weights and measures regulations and standards to achieve equity between buyers and sellers in the market place is updated.”

 

This, the Minister added, enhances consumer confidence, enables businesses to compete domestically on fair standards, and to participate in overseas markets.”

In supporting the Bill, Opposition Senator, Kamina Johnson Smith, said encouraging standardisation in relation to measures and weights is important to many aspects of the economy.

Other contributors to the debate included Government Senators – Wensworth Skeffery and K. D. Knight.