The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) is expecting to see several momentous changes and reforms in the Chinese standardization sphere in 2019, as the People's Republic of China marks its 70th anniversary and President Xi Jinping's administration focuses on rebalancing and stabilizing the market liberalization in economic reform. Starting the year off, on January 9th, the Chinese Standardization Administration (SAC) and the Ministry of Civil Affairs (MCA) jointly released the final version of the Management Regulations for Association Standards ("the latest regulation"). The original Chinese version can be found here.
As a vital piece of the regulation intended to support the implementation of the new China Standardization Law, the latest regulation replaced and abolished the trial version to serve as principal guidelines that lay out a groundwork for China to deepen its standardization reform. It also provides the oversight authority for the government to guide and monitor the development of association standards. An English translation of the comparative analysis provided by the Seconded European Standardization Expert in China project (SESEC) is accessible online here. It is provided for reference only.
The latest regulation is comprised of five chapters to establish a new and streamlined process that aims to make easier for the formulation, implementation, and supervision of association standards. Though the regulation addresses different aspects of standards activities, several key themes are of particular note.
First, the latest regulation suggests that the prioritized objective of the development of association standards shall be given to standards that meet new market needs, to include new technologies, new industries, new business types, and models. In addition, the latest regulation provides a detailed array of administrative procedures and technical review processes for the development of association standards. It encourages coordination and collaboration among manufacturers, users, business owners, consumers, academic institutions, government agencies, and third-party testing and accreditation providers. The latest regulation also encourages associations to make their standards information public and transparent through a public-facing platform.
Importantly, Article 6 of the regulation mandates the State Council to enforce self-disclosure and supervision mechanisms for association standards. Besides laying out the escalation path and approval process for developing and maintaining association standards, the latest regulation encourages international partnerships in association standards. It directs standardization research institutes to carry out professional services related to standards development, personnel training, and technical consultation.
Finally, the latest regulation provides a substantial description of scenarios where evaluation, rectification, and abolishment of an association standard will be carried out. This is to ensure association standards are developed, maintained, and implemented in accordance with all other obligations created by law and administrative regulation.
ANSI had previously provided initial concerns to the trial version of the regulation, many of which remain in the latest version. Given the significant additional regulatory ambiguity and challenges that are not fully defined, ANSI will work closely with its Chinese counterparts to promote implementation in an open, fair, and transparent manner. All questions, feedback or concerns can be directed to [email protected].
For more information on ANSI's China Program, please visit www.standardsportal.org.