American National Standards Institute (ANSI) president and CEO S. Joe Bhatia led the 24-member U.S. delegation, which included representatives from ANSI member organizations including industry, standards and code developing organizations, and the U.S. government.
"As ever, this year's COPANT Assembly provided an excellent forum to advance standardization activities in the Americas," explained Mr. Bhatia, who also serves as COPANT vice president. "By sharing information and keeping one another informed of the latest priorities we are addressing in our own nations, we can work together to facilitate global trade and disseminate the latest technologies and best practices, helping to assure better quality of life throughout our region."
At the General Assembly, a resolution was passed for an ad-hoc strategic planning group comprising representatives from ANSI and the Brazilian, Cuban, Canadian, and Colombian standards bodies. Led jointly by Mr. Bhatia and COPANT executive secretary Kory Eguino of Bolivia, this group will review the current Commission's current strategic plan and recommend any updates or needed modifications to bring the plan up to date with the Commission's objectives.
Ms. Eguino also provided a draft of the redesigned and improved COPANT website layout, which will serve as a portal and allow COPANT members to be better informed and connected.
During the course of the meeting, COPANT members demonstrated support for the nomination of ANSI delegate James E. Matthews III of Corning Inc. as vice president of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and chairman of the IEC Standardization Management Board (SMB).
In conjunction with the COPANT meetings, the ANSI delegation held a bilateral outreach meeting with AENOR, the Spanish national standards body. ANSI and AENOR discussed future areas of cooperation and plan to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in order to maintain the ongoing dialogue.
On Tuesday, April 28, the Forum of IEC National Committees of the Americas (FINCA) and DGN co-hosted a workshop to discuss important and timely issues affecting the standards bodies of the Americas. The Workshop on New Trends on International Standardization addressed topics such as Energy Efficiency, presented by the IEC; Smart Grid, presented by Gene Eckhart of the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA); Nanotechnology by Sonya Bird of Underwriters Laboratories (UL); Green Initiatives for an Eco World by Luis Ordonez, ASTM International's Mexico Office representative; and The Impact of Emerging Environmental and Energy Standards in Factory Automation Product Development by Alec McMillan of Rockwell Automation, among others.
The COPANT General Assembly and related meetings were valuable and productive events for the ANSI delegation, providing extensive opportunities for active engagement and information exchange between international stakeholders. The 2011 COPANT General Assembly will be held in Santiago, Chile. Further information, including a date and exact location, will be announced as it becomes available. For more information, contact Jessica Hychalk, ANSI manager, international policy, regional and bilateral programs (202.331.3622; [email protected]).
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