Original Press Release
ANSI Celebrates U.S.-India Standards and Conformance Cooperation Program Launch at USTDA Headquarters
Press release date: March 2, 2009
New York March 2, 2009
Over the past fifteen years, the bilateral trade of merchandise goods between the United States and India has increased nearly 400%. In an effort to boost this relationship and promote further growth, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) officially launched the U.S.-India Standards and Conformance Cooperation Program (SCCP) today with a ceremony in Arlington, Virginia.
The initiative, which will be carried out by the Institute with funding from the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) and in coordination with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), aims to improve access for U.S. companies to the Indian market by boosting cooperation on standards and conformance issues.
The program is expected to provide participants with an opportunity to become involved and increase their individual engagement with U.S. and Indian stakeholders. Through a series of workshops, small groups of experts from targeted industry sectors will participate in technical discussions about regulations, standards, and conformity assessment activities that could significantly affect the requirements for their industry.
Today's launch ceremony at the USTDA headquarters was attended by over 30 participants from U.S. and Indian organizations, including representatives from a number of government agencies and members of the ANSI Federation. Mr. S. Joe Bhatia, ANSI president and CEO, provided opening remarks at the ceremony.
"In order to be competitive and increase their overall productivity, U.S. companies doing business in India need more information and more dynamic resources," explained Mr. Bhatia. "They need to learn more about government regulations, industry standards, and the measures required to demonstrate compliance with them.
"That's why the SCCP is focused primarily on the exchange of information. Together, ANSI, USTDA, and CII, working in close cooperation with BIS [the Bureau of Indian Standards], are making a commitment to empower U.S. and Indian stakeholders with the standards and conformity assessment information resources they need." Additional opening remarks were provided by Ms. Leocadia Zak, acting director of the USTDA, and Mr. Sreekumar Nair, director of the CII.
Leaders in the U.S. and Indian trade community offered their perspectives on standards and conformity assessment activities. Speakers included Dr. Belinda Collins, director of technology services at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST); Ms. Holly Vineyard, deputy assistant secretary of market access and compliance for the International Trade Administration (ITA); Mr. Henry Steingass, regional director for South and Southeast Asia at the USTDA; Mr. Geoff Jackson, director for policy and programs at USTDA; Ms. Banashri Bose Harrison, minister of commerce for the Embassy of India; and Ms. Mary Saunders, chair of the ANSI International Policy Committee and deputy assistant secretary of manufacturing and services at the ITA.
For more information, visit www.StandardsPortal.org/us-indiasccp. Questions can be directed to Elise Owen, ANSI's representative for China and India affairs (firstname.lastname@example.org; 202-331-3624), or Leslie McDermott, ANSI project coordinator for regional and bilateral affairs (email@example.com; 202-331-3626).