What is a standard?
A standard is a document that contains technical or quality specifications developed by consensus for voluntary application. Standards can cover various subjects, such as the standardisation of different grades or sizes of a particular product or technical specifications in products or services that allows for compatibility and interoperability of products or systems.
South African National Standards (SANS) are a product of distilled wisdom of various stakeholders with relevant expertise in their technical fields representing organisations and the public at large. Standards are developed through the governance processes of SABS Technical Committees represented by manufacturers, retailers, buyers, customers, trade associations, users and regulators. The SABS works together with a wide variety of stakeholder groups to ensure that national standards are market oriented and are aligned to national priorities as articulated in the National Development Plan, Industrial Policy Action Plan and the Nine Point Plan, amongst others.
The Division maintains a collection of more than 7500 South African National Standards covering wide ranging
subjects in the fields of Electrotechnical
, Natural Sciences
, Built and Mechanical Engineering
and ICT and Services
. Standards play an increasingly important role in accessing markets thereby supporting domestic and international trade. Standards can further be used to support government policy and legislative mandates by referencing relevant standards to achieve such objectives. Over the years, the Division has established a national standards development system by participating in regional and international standardisation platforms and introducing a best practice prioritisation methodology to guide investments on relevant standards to be developed.