Standardisation aims to produce a precise, concise, readily applied and widely recognised set of principles that are relevant and can satisfy the business and industry needs. However, this doesn’t mean that standardisation should give a selective advantage to products or services of particular economic operators. On the contrary, independent third-party evaluators, also known as Certification Bodies, must always be able to verify the correct application of the standards objectively.
The standards can be national and international. In this regard, among the primary producers of national standards in Europe are the British Standards Institution (BSI) located in the UK, Deutsch Institut fur Normung e.v. (DIN) in Germany, and the Association Francais de Normalisation (AFNOR) in France. The most widely used standards outside of Europe come from the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Canadian Standards Association (CSA). Even though the mentioned above institutions published what are probably the most important series of standards, every single country with an industrial base has its own institutional body producing its own set of standards.
In a broader international aspect, CEN (European Committee for Standardisation) and CENELEC (European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardisation), together with ETSI (European Telecommunications Standards Institute) have the responsibility to produce harmonised European standards. These standards are crucial for the success of the European Single Market. Additionally, ISO (International Organisation for Standardisation) and IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) have similar goals but more focused on harmonising world standards.