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ANSI Participates in Moscow Meeting on Technical Standards and Compliance


New York, Feb 19, 2013

The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) – represented by Leslie McDermott, ANSI program manager for international development – recently took part in a meeting of Russian and U.S. experts on international trade that was hosted by Moscow’s World Trade Center. The meeting, which followed the August 2012 accession of Russia to the World Trade Organization (WTO), included significant discussion of methods to promote future U.S.-Russian trade, including improved cooperation in the areas of technical standards and compliance assurance.

U.S. exports to Russia exceeded $8 billion in 2011 and trade between the two countries is expected to rise significantly in the coming years as a result of Russia’s membership in the WTO, which opened up a major trade market for U.S. companies and provides an attractive opportunity to expand U.S. competitiveness abroad. In November, ANSI hosted a briefing at its headquarters in Washington, DC, providing information to members of U.S. industry about the implications of Russia’s WTO-related commitments, and soliciting feedback regarding standards, compliance, and market access priorities involving Russia [see related story].

The Moscow meeting was attended by a number of prominent U.S. officials, including Joseph Wereszynski and Bryan O’Byrne of the U.S. Department of Commerce International Trade Administration (ITA), John McCaslin, minister counselor for commercial affairs, U.S. Embassy, Moscow, as well as Valery Koreshkov, minister for technical regulations of the Eurasian Economic Commission, Vladimir Salamatov, the general director of Moscow’s World Trade Center, and other high-ranking Russian representatives.

During the meeting, Mr. Wereszynski, the Russia and Eurasia country desk officer for ITA’s Office of Market Access and Compliance, noted the unique nature of the U.S. voluntary standardization system, which is based on open, collaborative work involving private-sector groups and other affected stakeholders. In his remarks, Mr. Wereszynski suggested launching a standards exchange event to gain better knowledge of each side’s approach to standards development, which will form a baseline of understanding for how best to cooperate in the future.

Mr. Salamatov noted the large number of attendees at the meeting representing Russian industry and government groups, and remarked that the turnout “testifies to the big interest in the proposal made by U.S. colleagues – to discuss matters related to the regulation of international trade with national experts and specialists.” Mr. Koreshkov highlighted the importance of international cooperation in this area, saying, “Issues related to standardization cannot be discussed inside the country alone.” He praised the decision to hold a standards exchange event, stating, “This meeting will be of invaluable help for practical experience sharing, and will contribute to understanding of further actions in the area of standardization.”

More information about a standards exchange event in Russia, led by ITA and supported by ANSI, will be forthcoming.

Additional coverage of the meeting is available here on the Moscow World Trade Center website. For more information about ANSI’s work in this area, please contact ANSI at intl@ansi.org.

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