How can standards facilitate sustainable business?

October 27, 2022

Within the project «EU for Serbia – support for safer product» in the part related to the strengthening of the capacity of the national quality infrastructure and market surveillance, six round tables were organized during October in the regional Chambers of Commerce in Kragujevac, Valjevo, Novi Sad, Subotica and Zajecar. The final round table was organized in Regional Chamber of Commerce in Nis. Representatives of the Ministry of Economy, the Institute for Standardization of Serbia and the Chamber of Commerce spoke on the topic «Challenges in the application of technical regulations and how standards can facilitate sustainable business».

Zoran Bakic, representative of the Ministry of Economy, spoke about the key challenges in the application of technical regulations in practice –about the interpretation of regulations, preparation of the documentation, implementation of conformity assessment, labeling of products, the importance of applying Serbian and European harmonized standards, as well as the dilemmas that manufacturers have when placement products to the market. He also spoke about experiences in the interpretation and application of regulations for machines, electrical and electronic devices.

The European Union supports the Ministry of Economy and other line ministries in harmonizing the legislation of Serbia with the European Union in the area of free movement of goods, which, along with the freedom of movement of people, services and capital, is on of the basic freedoms on which EU is based, because the single and common market is the essence of European integration. When national product regulations are harmonized with European Union legislation, equal treatment, increased competitiveness, lower prices and greater and wider choice for consumers are ensured. 

«Standardization contributes to more efficient performance of business processes, compliance with regulations and building the trust of users, suppliers and other interested parties. Application of standards can improve the business of any organization, regardless of type, size and activity», said Ljubica Petrovic for the Institute of Standardization of Serbia. 

Speaking about the importance of good management of children’s playgrounds, Zoran Bakic from the Ministry of Economy, said that a major change in the way playgrounds is managed is necessary. «Communal inspection, as well as the republican market inspection, are responsible for inspection, and in most cases the owner of the playground is the local self-government, i.e., the city, or they are the owners/users of the facilities where the playground is located (restaurants, gas stations, hotels, private kindergartens and similarly). They have an obligation to maintain the playground throughout its lifetime», said Bakic. 

Taking into account the importance of the topic of climate changes and the need to adopt the economy to the latest regulations, Dusan Stokic from Chamber of Commerce of Serbia spoke about the regulatory framework and international standards for quantification and reporting on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, as well as the importance of sustainability standards for business and competitiveness of companies.

«Based on the many challenges complies face today in global markets, I presented the legal obligations of plant operators to monitor, report and verify greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions». The focus was on standards as an available voluntary instrument that represents the most effective support for companies in the fight against climate change, and in favor of sustainable business», said Stokic.

The European Union provides continuous support to Serbia in removing technical barriers to trade and the free movement of goods. The process of harmonization with EU regulations and standards was achieved, among other things, through technical support to institutions through several projects whose value is more than ten million euros.