To capture the broad perspective of the standards community, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) seeks feedback from its relevant stakeholders by November 18, 2021, on a request for information (RFI) issued by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to inform a response to the People's Republic of China (PRC) policies and influence in the development of international standards for emerging technologies. ANSI will work with its International Policy Advisory Group (IPAG) China Task Force to prepare a coordinated response to the RFI.
The RFI stems from the National Defense Authorization Act of 2021 (Section 9414), which directs NIST “to enter into an agreement with an appropriate entity to conduct a study and provide recommendations with respect to the effect of policies of the PRC and coordination among industrial entities within the PRC on international bodies engaged in developing and setting international standards for emerging technologies.”
The “China Standards 2035” strategic plan will lay out a blueprint for China's government and leading technology companies to set global standards for emerging technologies in areas such as artificial intelligence (AI) and advanced communications technology.
As the November 4 Federal Register notice details, international standards need to be relevant and to effectively respond to regulatory and market needs, as well as scientific and technological developments in various countries. They should not distort the global market, have adverse effects on fair competition, or stifle innovation and technological development. In addition, they should not give preference to the characteristics or requirements of specific countries or regions when different needs or interests exist in other countries or regions. Whenever possible, international standards should be performance based rather than based on design or descriptive characteristics.
The RFI invites stakeholders throughout the scientific research, advocacy, industry, and non-scientific communities, including the general public, to comment on five main areas:
1. The participation of the People's Republic of China in international standards setting organizations over the previous 10 years, including leadership roles in standards drafting technical committees, and the quality or value of that participation
2. The effect of the standardization strategy of the People's Republic of China, as identified in the “China Standards 2035” plan on international bodies engaged in developing and setting standards for select emerging technologies, such as advanced communication technologies, or cloud computing and cloud services
3. Whether international standards for select emerging technologies are being designed to promote interests of the People's Republic of China as expressed in the “Made in China 2025” plan to the exclusion of other participants
4. How previous practices used by the People's Republic of China while participating in international standards setting organizations may foretell how the People's Republic of China is likely to engage in international standardization activities of critical technologies like artificial intelligence and quantum information science, and what may be the consequences
5. Recommendations on how the United States can take steps to mitigate the influence of the People's Republic of China and bolster United States public and private sector participation in international standards-setting bodies
Stakeholders interested in submitting input to inform ANSI’s coordinated response should send their feedback on the five questions to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than November 18, 2021. Interested parties may also submit comments directly to NIST by 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on December 6, 2021, using the Federal Register link below.
Did You Know About the ANSI in China Program?
ANSI’s China Program has a direct and growing role in fostering greater U.S.-China cooperation in the areas of standardization and conformity assessment. For more information, visit ANSI’s StandardsPortal, which provides details and answers on standards, conformance, market access, and trade-related questions for China and other countries.