On June 30, 2016, the Standardization Administration of China (SAC) released a draft document entitled "Draft Methods for Administration of National Technical Committees" and called for public comment by July 20, 2016. The latest version, which provides updates to the 2009 version, was issued in accordance with the Chinese State Council's policy on deepening China's standardization reform and reflects the requirements of the reform plan, namely that technical committees should increase their coverage and representation in various sectors.
The draft document applies only to national technical committees (TCs) administered by SAC that are developing Chinese national standards. As of 2015, China had 536 TCs and 720 subcommittees (SCs), and these SAC-administered committees are responsible for 88% of Chinese national standards, according to SAC. As such, roughly 12% of standards developed by committees administered by non-SAC government agencies and/or other levels of local government will be managed outside the jurisdiction of this document.
The document proposes the following revisions:
Establishment of an SC will be determined with TC approval.
Establishment of a TC should be in accordance with required procedures and evaluated by expert committees. Establishment of new TCs will not be approved if the new TC can be incorporated into existing TCs.
In terms of balance of interest, no single stakeholder category will constitute more than one-half of the committee members.
In terms of voting for review of national standards and establishment and withdrawal of SCs, consensus should be based on two-thirds voting to approve and less than one-fourth voting to disapprove. In terms of voting for others, consensus should be based on one-half voting approve to.
The revised document establishes policies to evaluate and review the work of TCs on a regular basis. Members who do not participate in the review of a standard draft without a reason will be disqualified.
The document sets up a mechanism for cancellation/withdrawal of membership. TCs can be withdrawn by SAC or by competent authorities with SAC's approval.
In an effort to provide greater understanding and guidance on the revised draft, the Seconded European Standardization Expert in China (SESEC) hosted a "SESEC & Friends Standardization Roundtable" on July 29, 2016, at Qualcomm's Beijing office. Among the stakeholders in attendance were representatives of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), SAC, Deutsche Telekom AG, Daimler, the European Union Chamber of Commerce (EUCC), Nokia, Qualcomm, Oracle, Schneider, Siemens, the United States Information Technology Office (USITO), Verband Deutscher Maschinen- und Anlagenbau e.V. (VDMA), and SESEC.Yu Qian, deputy director, division of technical organization management in the general affairs management department of SAC, gave an in-depth presentation on the draft document. She stated that the intention of this document is to promote greater openness, fairness, and transparency in the standards development process of SAC-managed technical committees. She stressed in the Q&A session that SAC does not have the authority to ask TCs outside of SAC's management to comply with the rules set out in the draft. Ms. Yu also mentioned that foreign-invested enterprises (FIEs), stated-owned enterprises (SOEs), and private domestic companies will all enjoy the same opportunities for joining TCs. The draft document is no longer publically available on SAC's website as it was only sent to TCs and associations for comments. However, once the draft is completed, it will be distributed on the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) website.