to a question on the role of national standards elsewhere. “Another thing is that mandatory implementation of standards is different in some countries. Oftentimes, the responsibility for complying with standards rests with the corporations. This is no small point because corporations tend to have higher demands for their services, products and technologies. Some states have a good understanding of this.”
Baryshnikov cited the case of Norway as exemplary. Previously Norway had a number of serious accidents on the shelf entailing compliance with the requirements of national standards developed by the state. According to Baryshnikov, later on the state signed some agreements with the business community, who took on the main responsibility. “Standards are optional and voluntary, but there is a minimum level of requirements prescribed by the state standards with the businesses deciding for themselves which standards should be taken for guidance and, quite often, their demands are higher,” Baryshnikov says.
Businesses to Develop Standards
According to data quoted by Zazhigalkin (see Table 1), the contributions abroad to the development of industry standards for small and medium-sized businesses and professional organizations are as high as 85-90 percent, while in Russia they are a mere 7-10 percent.
But it cannot be said say that Russian business is idle. According to Andrew Lotsmanov, the first deputy head of the RSPP committee on technical regulation, standardization and conformity assessment, high activity is being displayed by pipe manufacturers, who teamed up to fund the development of new standards brought into harmony with international standards.
“If, for example, the RosStandard provides 400,000 rubles for research, then the pipe industry will add 1.5-2 million rubles more to this amount to develop standards,” Lotsmanov said.
The development of standards has been financed increasingly by Gazprom, and many of the company’s corporate standards are becoming national standards; some Gazprom standards may even get the chance to form the basis of ISO standards. In 2009-2010, a total of 13 national standards were approved and enacted, according to the Technical Committee for Standardization TK23, “Technique and Technology of Oil Extraction and Refining”, set up with the active participation of Gazprom.
During this two-year period, another 38 projects on international standards were reviewed, whereby 24 organizations sent 67 comments and reviews to the ISO TC committee. The most active members of TK23 included the Russian Maritime Register of Shipping, GazpromEnergoDiagnostics, Surgutneftegaz and SevKavNIPIgaz.
A standard for LNG quality was recently developed on a request from Gazprom. Denis Tikhomirov, the director of the Industry Branch Center for Product Quality Assurance and Certification at Gazprom VNIIGAZ LLC, said this standard is required to accommodate the reference gas supply requirements since the quality of LNG depends substantially on the quality of the original gas.
“There is no ISO standard for the quality of LNG. It is not needed, because LNG trades on the spot market, where every time a batch of a certain quality is sold,” Tikhomirov explains. “Each manufacturer gets his own quality and