CTSI has voiced its concern that the UK Government intends to conduct a review to assess opportunities for the reintroduction of imperial measurements.
The Institute has previously called for an impact assessment when proposals for the reintroduction first came to light in September 2021. Many of CTSI’s members, particularly those who work on weights and measures (metrology) issues, are concerned about potential pitfalls of any planned reintroduction, such as confusing consumers who have only ever been taught in metric or increasing costs to business ensuring that there is sufficient equipment available to monitor Imperial Measurements.
CTSI Chief Executive, John Herriman, said: “We have been expecting an announcement from the UK Government on consulting about the reintroduction of imperial measures, and whilst the full details have not yet been released, we would naturally expect there to be a full impact assessment.
“CTSI understands the need for choice amongst consumers and business, but the true impact of any proposed changes needs to be fully understood to ensure there are real tangible benefits. We understand the desire to create a feel-good factor, especially during a time of many profound economic challenges. However, at a time when consumers and businesses are already feeling the pinch from higher prices and inflation, it is really important that any proposed measures don’t bamboozle the public on value for money and the prices of everyday items, or add unnecessary costs and confusion to business.
“The reintroduction of imperial measures would require significant and sustainable investment into metrology, additions to the national curriculum, and a campaign to educate the general public. At a time when the vast majority of the rest of the world is working in metric it would also seem counter-intuitive to move back to imperial measures as, post-EU exit, we trade with a greater number of international countries as Global Britain.
“We therefore look forward to providing a full and measured response to the UK Government’s review.”