Exporters were told how to facilitate the certification of goods for delivery abroad
Russian companies that export goods abroad or only plan to organize supplies can receive comprehensive support from the authorities in the process of obtaining an assessment of product compliance with the requirements of the importing country. At the same time, the level of awareness of this among small and medium-sized businesses remains low. At the conference "Supportive exports: free access to foreign markets", representatives from Rosakkreditatsiya and the Russian Export Center (REC) spoke about what support entrepreneurs can receive to overcome trade barriers. Read more about it in the editorial "Made in Russia.
ASSISTANCE IN CONFORMITY ASSESSMENT OF GOODS
In 20 years, the weighted average tariff rate for exports and imports has decreased threefold, while the number of technical barriers to trade is growing, said Dmitry Gogolev, deputy head of Rosakkreditatsiya.
"The task of Rosakkreditatsiya is to remove technical barriers for participants in foreign economic activity. What tools do we have that we can offer exporters: there are global agreements on mutual recognition, which allow to recognize the results of tests and conformity assessment performed by certification bodies and testing laboratories. Today there are two global organizations, ILAC (International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation) and IAF (International Accreditation Forum). ILAC is more about laboratory analysis, and IAF is about conformity assessment, certification. Rosakkreditatsiya is a full member of both organizations," Gogolev said.
Membership in these associations allows to track fast changes in documents, adopt best practices, exchange experience and expertise. In addition Rosakkreditatsiya is a member of APAC (Asia Pacific Accreditation Cooperation) which encourages the service to regularly undergo international audits.
According to Gogolev, there are four scenarios in which accreditation bodies from different countries interact to simplify export procedures.
"The first is when the parties agree on mutual recognition. The second is when a conformity assessment body is accredited in a third country, and we are now actively working on this direction, which is a priority for the state in terms of mutual recognition of the results of conformity assessment. This applies primarily to greenhouse gas validation bodies. The third and fourth scenarios are more complicated and involve intergovernmental agreements between countries. The example is agreement of the European Union with the third countries - Canada, New Zealand, Australia when they sign agreements on unconditional recognition of the conformity assessment results for certain types of products", the deputy head of the federal service says.
There may be problems in this regard. For example, the differences in technical regulations of the importing countries: the Customs Union regulations are largely harmonized with European requirements, but if you look East, the requirements there may be very different, said Gogolev.
The second problem is the difference in recognized test methods: one country may determine by one methodology, the second by another, and it is necessary to agree that the test results of the two countries are identical.
UPDATING TESTING LABORATORIES AND EXPANDING METHODOLOGIES
"We now have a project to modernize our reference laboratories, which includes the introduction of test methodologies adopted abroad. This is done so that our test results can be recognized. For this purpose it is necessary to put a mark ILAC MRA on test reports. At the moment we have 62 testing laboratories with this mark, but this is a very small number of laboratories. So we see a great potential for growth here," said Gogolev.
The combined ILAC MRA mark on the test report or calibration certificate gives the document weight abroad because it confirms that it was issued by a laboratory whose accreditation is internationally recognized. For the exporter, this means that if it is evaluated by domestic laboratories, its products will be recognized abroad.
At the moment only 23% of methods are implemented in product certification bodies and testing laboratories in Russia, but by 2024 they will be testing more than 1 thousand types of products for compliance with export requirements to 88 countries of the world.
"The benefits we will get when this project is implemented: reducing exporters' costs by 2-3 times when supplying products abroad, because there will be no need to repeat tests. And it will not only save money, but also reduce the time," Gogolev noted.
Russia is also beginning to develop greenhouse gas validation and verification bodies.
"As you know, the climate agenda is now very active. Since 2023, our partners from the EU are introducing cross-border carbon regulation. Essentially, any product that will cross the EU border will be subject to an additional tax, depending on what kind of carbon footprint it leaves. Besides, in July this year, a law on limiting greenhouse gases was passed, which established the obligation of organizations that emit more than 150 thousand tons of CO2 to report on their emissions. And these reports must be subject to obligatory verification," reminded a representative of Rosakkreditatsiya.
SUPPORT FOR NEGOTIATIONS WITH PARTNERS AND REIMBURSEMENT OF COSTS
In addition to non-financial services, such as search for a foreign buyer abroad and support in negotiations, REC advises exporters on conformity assessment in foreign markets, said Milana Mambetova, director of REC's center of expert support.
"A Russian company can ask the REC to help find a suitable body that can provide certain services for the conformity assessment of products according to foreign requirements. If a small or medium-sized business has no information on what requirements are applied to its products abroad, this information is also provided to the exporter," Mambetova said.
An enterprise can receive support when interacting directly with a foreign certification body. That includes help in overcoming the language barrier, problems with the timing of the audit or certification. The service is free of charge, the average term of rendering it is about a month.
This year the REC launched the platform "Export Professionals" as part of the information system "One Window". Thanks to it, exporters can receive services in four areas: "Logistics", "Partner Search", "Legal Support" and "Electronic Trade".
"In the second quarter of next year, we expect another area of certification will be brought out - consulting on labeling and labeling. There is a service "Preparation of the object of certification for conformity assessment and audit," which includes five options. <...> If the exporter has already "knocked" to the body and received a rejection on these documents, it is allowed that he can apply to the service for the purpose of finalizing the comments. It is also a translation of information, a preliminary assessment of the product or enterprise, as well as accompaniment of the application to the laboratories up to the dispatch of test samples. These services are rendered on a reimbursable basis," she explained.
The level of awareness of the capabilities of Russian laboratories among exporters is low, so the REC plans to provide a separate "marker" on the platform. It will classify partners that belong to reference laboratories and those that conduct tests according to foreign standards. This will make it easier for exporters to navigate, Mambetova explained.
There are a number of subsidy programs within the agency functions, explained the REC representative. Among them are transport subsidies, compensations for the registration of trademarks and subsidies for the participation in exhibitions. There is a program under which companies can save up to 80% of the costs, not only for the registration of products abroad, but also for laboratory and clinical tests, she noted. This project is overseen by the Ministry of Industry and Trade.
Made in Russia // Made in Russia
Author: Karina Kamalova