Iraq COC: An Interview with Jennifer Chen, Vice President of the HQTS Group

HQTS has recently been awarded a franchise to conduct mandatory inspections on a wide variety of products imported to Iraq. We sat down with Jennifer Chen, the Vice President of the HQTS Group, to discuss this exciting new opportunity.

What is the Iraq COC?

The Iraq Certificate of Conformity, or ‘COC’, is a new requirement for goods entering Iraq that will take effect in February of this year. It will apply to 700 items across 12 categories including food and a wide range of industrial and consumer products. HQTS is one of only four companies permitted to issue an Iraq COC and we are very excited for the opportunity to help customers in this emerging market.

Why should people consider exporting products to Iraq?

Though the news has not always been positive, Iraq’s significant oil exports and strong consumer market have made it an attractive destination for exporters. If you look at the numbers, it is very clear that the country has been importing in increasing amounts over the past five years. Iraq has a stable and growing demand for food, construction materials for its reconstruction efforts, and a wide range of consumer goods such as electronics and auto parts.

Does HQTS have experience in the Middle East?

HQTS has extensive experience working with partners in the UAE and other countries in the region. Interestingly, these countries have very similar import standards and the Iraq COC is not unique. Our experience in the region will serve us well in Iraq.

Why should exporters to Iraq choose HQTS?

HQTS is well positioned to serve the Asian market. With offices in key exporting countries such as China, Vietnam, and India, we can work directly with customers from their home countries. Most importantly, in addition to providing services at the Iraqi port of Basra, HQTS also has a service location in Baghdad with local Arabic speaking employees who are ready to address any issues that may arise.

What should clients expect from the HQTS approach?

Over the years, we have established a reputation for professionalism, efficiency, and flexibility in the QC industry. We will always rise to the occasion to ensure both the quality and timeliness of our customers’’ shipments.