There is a positive relationship between standards and the competitiveness of organizations. Not only nationally, but also internationally, standards have a fruitful outcome impact. They promote free movement. And they make it easier for foreign companies or consumers to accept your products or services.
Both the (international) literature and the recent VUB study commissioned by NBN confirm this. No fewer than 38.3 percent of respondents cited improved market access as the reason for using standards. And why is that?
A standard is a consensus agreement for our society and economy. It contains clear agreements about a product, service, process or method. A guarantee of compatibility. On a national, European or global level. By applying standards, your (future) trading partner knows what he can expect from you. This speeds up his decision-making process to choose you.
Go a step further and do your products or services require CE marking or ISO certification? Then you work out any barriers beforehand. That ensures a better supply of international chains, and results in higher performance and lower costs. That strengthens your competitive advantage.
75 percent of the standards published in Belgium are European. All countries of the European Economic Area are obliged to implement European standards as national standards. In other words, 75 percent of all standards published in Belgium are identical to those of more than 30 countries! This creates enormous opportunities for your exports within Europe.
European standards are known for their high quality standards. As a result, they also enjoy wide recognition in Southeast Asia, Australia, Africa and South America. A good example of this is Belgian Safety Product. The Organisation started working on European standards and a CE mark for its products years ago. Today they export their lighting poles to thirteen European countries as well as Uruguay and Qatar.
Standards are your international trade passport. They provide you with easier access to new customers and collaboration opportunities - worldwide. The potential is enormous.