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May COPOLCO Meetings Postponed Due to SARS Outbreak

New York, Apr 08, 2003

International Organization for Standardization (ISO) president Alan Bryden issued an urgent statement today, informing all members of the ISO Consumer Policy Committee (COPOLCO) that the meeting, workshop and training seminar scheduled to take place on May 12-15, 2003 in Bangkok would be postponed. The decision was made in response to the outbreak of a serious and baffling new disease, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).

The disease first emerged in China several weeks ago, and has generated a great deal of concern worldwide. While outbreaks have been limited to roughly 20 countries, potential infection rates between now and mid-May are substantial and impossible to predict. Because the pathogen has not yet been identified and a reliable means of treating the disease has not yet been found, “the best course of action is prevention,” the announcement stated.

Bryden, the COPOLCO Chair and the management team of the Thai Industrial Standards Institute (TISI) have agreed to reschedule the COPOLCO events for September 8-11 in Bangkok. Members will be advised about a possible revised agenda and the procedures for dealing with more urgent items as soon as possible.

Information on SARS is updated daily on the World Health Organization website.

ANSI member with questions regarding the COPOLCO meeting may contact James McCabe, ANSI director of consumer relations and public policy (, 212-642-8921)

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