ANSI - American National Standards Institute
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ANSI and IRAM Leaders Sign Agreement of Cooperation

New York, May 17, 2002

Today, the leaders of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Instituto Argentino de Normalización (IRAM), the national standards body of Argentina, signed an agreement of cooperation (AoC) to promote the global use of international standards and ensure that their national standards facilitate international free trade.

The agreement was signed by ANSI president and chief executive officer, Dr. Mark Hurwitz, and IRAM general director, José Francisco López, during the General Assembly meeting of the Pan American Standards Commission (COPANT), a civil, non-profit association that promotes the development of technical standardization and related activities in the Americas, that was held in Toronto, Canada. The first AoC between the U.S. and Argentina defines several methods by which the two organizations plan to carry out their collaborative goals.

As a building block to international standardization and free trade, the agreement encourages the establishment of bi-lateral relationships between counterpart groups in each country. Joint projects of these counterpart groups could include trade shows and exhibits, business ventures and industry-to-industry cooperation. The bilateral agreement allows ANSI and IRAM to explore the possibility of organizing and sponsoring conferences, workshops and technical symposia on standardization and conformity assessment subjects of mutual interest. In addition, it encourages the exchange of visits between senior management staff of the two organizations.

To ensure the continuous flow of information concerning international activities, operations and technical work areas, ANSI and IRAM will periodically exchange views on issues within the global standards and conformity assessment arena, including information from the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), and COPANT. Both ANSI and IRAM are members of COPANT, ISO and IEC; for the Institute, IEC membership is via the U.S. National Committee.

"The IRAM/ANSI agreement will help to implement several important goals of the U.S. National Standards Strategy (NSS)," explained Dr. Hurwitz, "including recognition of 'one globally applied standard and one globally accepted test, with conformity assessment processes appropriate to the needs of the parties, for each characteristic of a product, process or service.' In addition, the agreement will help foster a closer working relationship with one of our colleagues in Latin American and assist in promoting global standardization and international free trade. We look forward to working with IRAM on these important issues."

ANSI Nanotechnology Standards Panel