Describes the country's standards landscape, identifies the national standards and accreditation bodies, and lists the main national testing organization(s) and conformity assessment bodies.
Last Published: 8/13/2019


The two primary government agencies in Nigeria which regulate product standards are the Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) – the apex standardization body in Nigeria; and the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) which regulates the production, trade and sale of food, drugs, cosmetics, chemicals, detergents, medical devices and packaged water.


SON: The organization’s objectives are to:

  • Prepare standards relating to products, measurements, materials and processes among others, and their promotion at the national, regional and international levels;

  • Certify industrial products;

  • Provide capacity for local production of quality goods;

  • Improve measurement accuracy; and

  • Circulate information relating to standards.

NAFDAC: by its enabling legislation, NAFDAC is empowered to “regulate and control the importation, exportation, manufacture, advertisement, distribution, sale and use of food, drugs, cosmetics, medical devices, bottled water and chemicals” or regulated products by conducting tests to ensure compliance with standards specifications predetermined by the NAFDAC Council. NAFDAC is also empowered to inspect imported regulated products and production sites as well as issue certification for regulated products destined for export.

SON’s two major schemes for determining conformity to standards are:

  1. Mandatory Conformity Assessment Program (MANCAP): this is a mandatory program which ensures that all locally manufactured products conform to the relevant Nigerian Industrial Standards (NIS) prior to sale or export. For more information visit SON.


  1. SON Conformity Assessment Program (SONCAP): SONCAP checks goods pre-shipment to ensure that imports into Nigeria are in conformity with the applicable NIS or approved equivalents.


  1. NAFDAC’s Laboratory Service Directorate is responsible for analyzing the quality and compliance to requirements of all regulatory products including imports and exports. The Directorate also monitors products in the market post-registration to ensure standards are maintained, investigates quality complaints by the public and serves as a reference laboratory for other government agencies such as the NCS and the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).

Product Certification

SON’s product certification is implemented through the following schemes:

  1. Voluntary Product Certification Scheme (NIS Mark of Quality): this scheme is designed to reward products which consistently comply with the requirements if the relevant NIS at the point of production and in the markets. For more information: 


  1. Product-Type Certification for Exports: under this scheme, products in a specific consignment are tested for conformance with applicable standards or trade contract. For more information:

NAFDAC’s Registration and Regulatory Affairs Directorate is responsible for certifying products following testing by the Laboratory Service Directorate as well as other conformity assessment exercises. The Directorate also undertakes investigation of public complaints and post-registration surveillance and serves as coordinator for foreign Goods Manufacturing Practices (GMP) in Nigeria.
Testing, inspection and certification

SON’s conformity assessment focuses on third party assessments of products and processes. Nevertheless, SON has expertise in assessing product conformity in the following areas: chemical, inorganic and textile testing with ISO/IEC 17025 accreditation for its chemistry laboratory. Testing of international products is typically outsourced to international testing laboratories. For more information on assessment:

NAFDAC has accredited consultants with requisite knowledge of laws and regulations relating to foods and drugs regulation in Nigeria and globally. These consultants assist firms to meet regulatory requirements for local production, sale and export. Full list of consultants check NAFDAC.


Publication of technical regulations

SON standards are spelled out in the Nigerian Industrial Standards (NIS) which “provides, for common and repeated use, rules, guidelines or characteristics for products and services and related processes or production methods, aimed at the achievement of the optimum degree of order in each context.” The NIS is reviewed by several of the under-listed Technical Groups under the leadership of SON’s Director of Standards Department and approved by SON’s Standard Council. A Technical Library serves as the compendium for all published standards.

Technical Groups:

  • Electrical/Electronic Group

  • Food/Codex Group

  • Chemical Technology Group

  • Civil/Building Group

  • Service Standards Group

  • Mechanical/Metrology Group

  • Textile & Leather Group

  • International Standards group

Member countries of the World Trade Organization (WTO) are required under the Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT Agreement) to report to the WTO all proposed technical regulations that could affect trade with other member countries.  Notify U.S. is a free, web-based e-mail subscription service that offers an opportunity to review and comment on proposed foreign technical regulations that can affect your access to international markets.  Register online at NOTIFY U.S.   

SON, also in compliance with the TBT and as the apex standardization body in Nigeria, serves as the National Enquiry Point – a source for standards-related information – for stakeholders within and outside Nigeria.

NAFDAC maintains a compendium of its regulations and guidelines on its website. These include its key regulations on cosmetics, foods, drugs, chemicals, herbal products and breastmilk substitutes.

It is important to note that even in instances where SON and NAFDAC regulations are thorough and clear in documentation, the best practice is to inquire about any changes to regulations and approach each issue on a case-by-case basis.


Contact Information

Contact details for SON’s Corporate Headquarters are as follows:
52, Lome Crescent,
Wuse Zone 7, Abuja
Phone: +234(0)8002255766, +234(0)7056990099
Customer Feed Back Desk: +23470322800925, +2348159570003

Contact details for NAFDAC Corporate Headquarters are as follows:
Plot 2032, Olusegun Obasanjo Way
Wuse Zone 7, Abuja
Phone: 09-6718008, 09-5240996

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