The Lahore High Court (LHC) has mandated the Engineering Development Council (EDB) to ensure mandatory airbag installation on locally produced vehicles.
As per reports, the Secretary of the Automotive Development Committee (AIDC) announced this at the last meeting of the Automotive Development Committee (AIDC) at the Investment Council (BOI).
The AIDC secretary informed the meeting that Pakistan had passed FPIC regulations and received the E-64 symbol for official communications.
Moreover, the Council for Technical Development (EDB) and the Ministry of Industry have submitted the regulations. Listed in the related table as an attachment to the accession document. However, the annex forwarded by EDB has not been forwarded by the UN Secretary-General Office to WP 29 Secretariat in Geneva.
The Auto Industry Development Committee (AIDC) conducted a meeting at the Board of Investment (BOI).
While briefing the meeting, Secretary AIDC informed that Pakistan has adopted WP.29 Regulations, but the auto industry is yet to implement those regulations.
Ali Asghar Jamali, Chairman Pakistan Automotive Manufacturers Association (PAMA), said:
The industry agrees to implement WP.29 regulations in a phase-wise manner.
As the meeting went along, Mr. Tariq Ahmed Khan, Director (Technical) Indus Motors, supported the Chairman PAMA. He further added that the industry needs a grace period to implement the safety regulation of Airbags. Subsequently, Chairman Engineering Development Board (EDB) then asked the New Entrants for their opinion on the matter.
Upon agreement of all new entrants, Chairman PAMA allowed the implementation of 16 shortlisted regulations, including airbags, with timelines.
Indeed, the meeting was adjourned with the action item that the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) will include the 16 regulations, with the agreed timelines, in the Statutory Regulatory Order (SRO) 656.
However, he added that the third-party / certification must be accepted by the client or if the facility is set up in Pakistan; PAMA members can test their cars from Pakistan. He also said:
“If we are to increase production and protect the environment, there must be an old vehicle retirement policy. Vehicles have been dangerous for decades and damaged the environment.”
Zaheer-ud-Din Dar, CEO of Dartways, asked if a tire or lighter seller needed WP-29 compliance.
WP.29 Vehicle Regulations
The UNECE World Forum for Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations (WP.29) is a unique worldwide regulatory forum for vehicles and vehicle equipment. Also, the WP.29 member countries follow three UN Agreements of 1958, 1997, and 1998. Pakistan has agreed to adopt vehicle regulations under the 1958 UN Agreement.
Why did this happen?
Airbags are one of the standard safety features of a vehicle. Without airbags, cars are coffins on wheels, and local assemblers are the undertakers.
Recently, a citizen moved the Lahore High Court (LHC) to make airbags essential in passenger cars and other vehicles. The AIDC and LHC have done it right by ordering the auto manufacturers to install airbags in all locally assembled vehicles.
Surely, this is a good step towards the prosperity of the Automobile industry.
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