ANSI - American National Standards Institute
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House Passes the Standards Developing Organizations Advancement Act of 2003

New York, Jun 11, 2003

The Standards Developing Organizations Advancement Act of 2003 (H.R. 1086) was passed by the U.S. House of Representatives yesterday, to provide a new degree of limited relief to standards development organizations under existing antitrust laws.

H.R. 1086 amends the National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993 to address antitrust laws applying to joint ventures by providing limited antitrust protection to participants in such activities. The new bill recognizes the assistance that standards developing organizations (SDOs) provide to government agencies in developing standards for regulatory and procurement functions and now creates an explicit filing opportunity for developers of voluntary, consensus standards. The law also would help avert “unnecessary and costly” litigation against SDOs that have no commercial interest with regard to the technical specifications contained in the standards.

David Karmol, ANSI vice president of public policy and government affairs, testified as part of a panel of standards and conformity assessment representatives in a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee Task Force on Antitrust in April. “This legislation strikes a good balance, and provides some recognition of the contribution that standards developing organizations make to the American society and economy, and increasingly, as partners with the federal government.”

See related story: Standards Representatives Testify Before Congress on SDO Advancement Act