The Standards Council of Canada (SCC) supports Canadian governments to leverage standardization and conformity assessment strategies to meet policy and regulatory objectives. Standardization has an established value for government, including:
- Cost-effective compliance via established infrastructure;
- Reduces burden on industry of regulatory compliance;
- Enhances alignment between jurisdictions and reduces barriers to trade;
- Contributes to red tape reduction (time/costs);
Overseen by the SCC, Canada’s standardization system is made up of numerous individuals and organizations from across Canada dedicated to the promotion, development, and implementation of standards. Standardization includes standards and conformity assessment, which are developed based on stakeholder needs and follows the below cycle:
- Need – stakeholder identifies need for a new standard or a revision to an existing standard, potentially to meet changing social, industry or regulatory environments.
- Objective – Standard development organizations (SDOs) work with stakeholders to evaluate and approve the standards development. SCC can support stakeholders with SDO procurement.
- Standard Development – The SDO forms or directs the development of the standard to a technical committee, formed of multi-stakeholder participants, to develop the standards content using a consensus based, transparent, and accessible process that includes public review and cost/benefit analysis.
- Application – Standards can be used by stakeholders to promote best practices, harmonization, and baseline requirements as well as used to assess conformity through certification, inspection, and testing.
- Review – Standards are reviewed under the mandatory maintenance cycle within 5 years, and may identify new stakeholder needs or objectives.
How does standards and conformity assessment support regulators?
- Safeguards the health and safety of Canadian citizens in a wide variety of sectors (Consumer products, Healthcare, Environment etc.)
- Provides important economic benefits, and reduces regulatory compliance costs
- Supports market access for a wide range of Canadian products and services by certifying compatibility through conformity assessment
- Can be incorporated by reference (in part, or in whole) in regulations/legislation
- Supports compliance with the Cabinet Directive on Regulations (CDR) and Canada’s international trade and regulatory cooperation commitments, such as the WTO TBT Agreement.