Brexit and standardization

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In a White Paper published on the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union, the UK government devotes an inset to European standardization.

It specifies there that it is working with the British Standards Institution (BSI) to ensure that “their future relations with the European standards organizations will continue to support a productive, open and competitive commercial environment in the United Kingdom”. The BSI wants to continue to play a key role in developing European standards.

However, depending on the exit procedure, the impact on BSI’s participation will not be the same. If the United Kingdom joins the European Economic Area (EEA) and becomes a member of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), there will be no change in its role and its involvement in European standardization. However, if it joins only the EFTA, its role will be diminished. During a vote on a new subject or draft standard, if the latter does not receive enough votes to achieve the necessary majority, then the United Kingdom will be excluded from the second vote. 

In either case, the BSI will remain a full member of the European standards system.


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