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IEC standards and certification help achieve UN SDGs
2021 Qingdao Forum International Standardization
2021 Qingdao Forum International Standardization

The 2021 Qingdao Forum on International Standardization took place virtually on 27-28 July with the theme Standards for Sustainable Development Goals.

The event, which attracted around 300 participants, was jointly sponsored by the Shandong provincial government and the State Administration for Market Regulation and supported by IEC, ISO, ITU, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization and other international organizations.

“IEC provides the technical basis for millions of devices and systems and promotes the development of electrotechnology across the world, making human society enjoy the beautiful life it brings,” said IEC President Dr. Shu Yinbiao in his video address. “IEC international standards provide the technical foundation for the whole energy chain and all the hardware that is driven by electricity, helping achieve greater efficiencies, improving the safety of devices, workers and populations, and increasing the resilience and long-term viability of infrastructure.”

Enabling access to global markets

IEC work directly impacts targets and indicators of all 17 SDGs. It provides the technical foundation for the whole energy chain and all the hardware that is driven by electricity. It helps achieve greater efficiencies; improves the safety of devices, workers and populations; increases the resilience and long-term viability of infrastructure and reduces cost.

“The use of IEC International Standards allows companies and countries to access world markets and participate in global value chains”, said IEC General Secretary and CEO, Philippe Metzger, who gave a keynote during the event. “IEC International Standards are essential for quality and risk management and form the basis for testing and certification.”

The IEC Conformity Assessment Systems verify that systems used in homes, offices, healthcare facilities, manufacturing, lighting, energy services, explosive environments, electronics supply chains or renewable energy generation perform as they should.

Metzger gave examples of how IEC activities contribute to the SDGs, for instance, increasing the safety of electric tools and of the workers who use them (SDG 8) and underpinning the large majority of the electrical and electronic infrastructure in cities and communities (covering forms of transportation, water and sanitation, electricity generation, healthcare, financial and administrative services, security and alarm systems, access control, CCTV and lighting), as well as make infrastructure more resilient, helping to mitigate disaster risks and accelerating disaster recovery (SDG 11).

Everyone benefits

Metzger concluded by noting the different groups who benefit from standards.

Regulators and policy makers are able to rely on IEC International Standards to set the safety, security, reliability and sustainability requirements for quality infrastructure in energy generation, water management, food transformation, healthcare, education, transportation, thereby keeping populations safe and protecting the environment.

Governments can verify that systems are properly installed, manufacturer promises are kept, and consumers are protected from dangerous and counterfeit products through certification by IEC Conformity Assessment Systems.

Consumers benefit from more efficient, affordable and reliable products and services, while companies of all sizes are able to design and build innovative solutions in support of SDGs.

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