General Information

​​​​​​​​​Standardization​

It refers to the operations related to the preparation and application of bases and rules set for the organization and control of activities in cooperation of all parties concerned to achieve a main objective. The main objective is achieving optimum economy taking into account performance conditions, safety requirements, and environmental safety requirements. Standardization includes inspection; testing; evaluation and assertion of conformity; accreditation; and certification.

Prepare a set of standards and a set of activities. Activities include conformity assessment activity that uses different tests.

  • Objectives of standardization in general:
    1- Facilitate operations by providing certified technical reference for production and manufacturing and offering better information about a product or service.
    2- Facilitate the identification of good suppliers by evaluating standards used, with easy access to more options, commodities, and services.
    3- Reduce the number of inspections or tests due to the existence of certified reference results.
    4- Reduce errors in production, manufacturing, management systems and service delivery.
    5- Provide a safer and healthier product.
    6- Reduce costs and increase competition, thus lower prices for consumers.
    7- Facilitate intra-international and commercial transactions where technical standards of products and services have emerged and have sometimes gained more importance than customs' tariffs.
    8- Increase customer satisfaction with the quality and safety of a product or service in addition to the safety of use.

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    Objectives of standardization through standards axis:
    1- Simplification: Reducing diversity of models, units, definitions, types of services and rate of implementation stages to the extent that facilitates various exchange activities in information, commodities, materials, terminology, etc.
    2- Unification of basic elements: Establishing unified bases, standards and requirements to provide opportunities for use by all concerned individuals in all sectors.
    3- Consumer Protection: Through data, manuals or publications on various commodities and the determination of maximum limits for harmful and toxic substances, as well as offering commodities in markets for trading so as to conform to standards.

    • International
    • Regional
    • ​National

    By improving appropriateness of products, production processes and services for the purposes for which they were allocated; preventing barriers to trade; and facilitating technical cooperation.

    A document that describes the requirements, rules, guidelines, and instructions needed for an action, service, or product. Often, an explanatory description of the procedure, service or product is added. ​


  • o Achieve safety and security.
    o Increase consumer confidence.
    o New markets and customers.
    o Means of development and renewal.
    o Rationalize resources and provide raw materials.
    o Control quality.
    o Increase worker efficiency and productivity.
    o Produce more at a lower price.

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    Importance of standards for manufacturer or producer:
    o Reduce waste in production ores.
    o Increase the efficiency of the operation of machines and equipment through their association with integrated standards.
    o Possibility of competition with imported commodities.
    o Facilitate and simplify technical studies and development of specialists without stress.
    o Ensure advertising activities and that they are not misleading, which will increase rates of marketing.
    o Ensure the safety and security of production workers.
    o Harmonize production processes at different stages with their link to total quality systems, which reduces costs. 

  • Quality control as a basis for consumer protection. ​

    • Integrated as much as possible;
    • Harmonious and its items do not conflict;
    • Fully explain the type of product, service or process covered;
    • Take into account future technical developments;
    • Focus more on performance requirements;
    •  Easily understandable by qualified people;
    • Prepared according to the methodology of preparing Gulf standards.
  • ​ ​

  • First: According to the issuer
    o ​International standards such as (ISO, IEC)
    o Regional standards such as standards of GCC Standardization Organization (GSO)
    o National standards such as standards of Saudi Standards, Metrology and Quality Organization (SASO)
    Second: According to the type of issue
    o Adopted standards based on international standards.
    o Standards prepared by specialized technical committees of standardization bodies.
    Third: According to the field
    o Product standards
    o Testing methods standards
    o Sampling standards
    o Terminology standards
    o Management systems standards (MSS)
  • o Access and study references;
    o Prepare the first draft;
    o Distribute the draft to relevant bodies to be studied;
    o Collect and study notes;
    o Distribute the draft again to relevant bodies to be studied;
    o Prepare the draft for approval. 
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  • A) Title of the standard
    •  The title of the standard should be brief.
     • It should be clear and unambiguous.
    •  It should not contain more than three elements as follows:
    1. Introductory element: refers to the general field;
    2. Main element: refers to the main subject;
    3. Supplementary element: refers to a special appearance within the main subject.
    B) Introduction
    • It is included in each standard and does not include figures or tables
    • It consists of a general and a special part:
    1. General part: gives information about the standardization organization that issued the standard.
    2. Special part: deals with the technical aspects related to the standard and other standards.
  • C) Table of Contents
         It is an optional introductory element which becomes necessary if it makes the standard easier to be invested.
    D) Scope of application item:
    • It is stated at the beginning of each standard.
    • It clearly specifies the subject of the standard.
    The field starts with the following terms:
    1. In commodity standards: This standard aims to address…
    2. In terms and definitions standards: This standard specifies the terms and definitions related to ... etc.
    3. In testing methods standards: This standard specifies the procedure for testing...etc.
    4. In calibration methods standards: This standard specifies calibration methods…etc.
    5. In management systems standards: establishing (implementing) this standard ... etc.
    6. In guides: This standard gives guidelines for...etc.
    E) Supplementary References:
    • Clarification of other indispensable standards.
    • The complementary standard is indicated by its full number and title. If the draft has not yet been approved, its subject is indicated together with the phrase "which will be issued".
    • Supplementary references may include standards issued by other available standardization bodies.
    • If the date of the supplementary standard is not mentioned, the latest version should be applied.
    • Supplementary references should not mention standards that are not available, criteria of information, or reference books used in the preparation of the standard.
    F) Terms and definitions
    • This optional item provides necessary definitions used to understand specific terms.
    • If certain terms and definitions are mentioned in the standard, the item begins with "For purposes of this document, the following definitions and terms apply".
    • If certain terms and definitions are mentioned in other standards, the item begins with "For purposes of this document, the terms and definitions mentioned in the following standard apply".
    • Adherence to using definitions mentioned in the standard.
    • A note that the term in this sense is used in the relevant field
    • Commercial, old and odd terms should be avoided.
    • The definition should include all necessary elements that help in understanding the meaning
    • All expressions used in definitions should be clear
     •Illustrations can be used to increase understanding
     •International symbols and units should be used
    G) Requirements:
    • Basic requirements for standards of commodities and products
    • All aspects of the product
    • Value limits of these requirements are measurable
    • Each requirement has a reference to the test method used
    • Clear differentiation between characteristics, explanations, and recommendations
    • Contract, legal and legislative requirements are not included
    • In product standards, instructions for use and warnings may be necessary; however, they do not fall within the requirements as they do not apply to the product itself.
    H) Sampling
    •  This section specifies the conditions, methods of sampling, and methods of preservation.
     • This item can be placed at the beginning of the test method item.
    •  When referring to sampling methods issued in a separate standard, this standard is indicated by the complete number and title of the standard.
    I) Testing methods item:
    • This item gives all measures taken to set values of properties or check conformity and ensure the accuracy of results.
    • It arranges procedures related to testing methods in the following order:
    1. Foundation;
    2. Reagents;
    3. Equipment;
    4. Preparation and keeping of test sample;
    5. Working method;
    6. Presenting results along with method of calculation, limits of accuracy, and testing;
    7. Test report.
    • It is put in a separate, or part of, standard.
    • Documentation of general testing methods as well as tests related to the same characteristics in other standards shall be taken into account.
    • If they involve the use of hazardous substances, they should include a general warning.
    • Only one testing method is mentioned in the standard.
    • Testing methods are selected according to their accuracy.
    J) Explanatory data and packaging:
    Numbering, explanatory data and packaging are complementary topics to be included in consumer product standards, including:
    1. Product identification data including factory name and address;
    2. Marketing data using labels or cards;
    3. Place of data;
    4. Requirements for labeling or product packing.
    K) Standard annexes:
          Standard annexes give additional measures to the contents of the standard. They are optional.
    L) Tables:
    •  Tables are used when they are considered the most appropriate way to display information.
    •  The table number is indicated in the body of the standard.
    •  Tables are not divided into additional tables.
    •  If more than one, tables are numbered consecutively.
    •  The table number is followed by the table name.
     • Measurement units are indicated in each column below the column header. If the units are identical in all columns, they are indicated above the table from the left side.
    •  Notes for each table are added within the table frame from the bottom.
    M) Figures and graphs:
    • Used when they are effective means of expression.
    • Each figure takes a number starting with (1).
    • If all units of measurement used in a figure are the same, the unit used on the left side is written above the graph
    • Notes on each figure or graph is written below it.
    N) Mathematical equations:
    • Equations between quantities are placed in the form of mathematical equations between numeric values, while variables are placed in alphabetic characters. Then the meaning of these characters is defined taking into account not to repeat the same variable in one standard within the variable, which may cause incorrect results.
    • Mathematical equations are numbered within one standard.
    O) References:
    • They are put after the last annex.
    • Sufficient information is mentioned to identify the source of reference books.
    • Reference books are written in an alphabetical or numeric sequence.
    • If the reference is electronic, it includes the address and electronic details in full.​

  • Standards

  • ​Standards and technical regulations determine the characteristics of commodities and the appropriate levels of quality that must be available to achieve the purposes of use; suit prevailing conditions; protect consumer health and safety; and preserve the environment.

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  • In order to issue a standard, SASO takes technical teams as a way to prepare standards' drafts and technical regulations to reflect reality and meet the needs of national industry. It also provides an opportunity for the national factories and companies to determine standards related to their products to prioritize them in the plan of standards' drafts. ​​
  • 1. Technical regulation is a (mandatory) standard. It is a document adopted by SASO specifying the characteristics of products or processes and associated production methods including applicable administrative provisions. Its application is mandatory. It may also include or apply to measurement and calibration; terminology; symbols; packaging and labeling; marks and data requirements that apply to a product, process, method of production, testing methods, or sampling methods.
    2. (Optional) Standard is a document adopted by SASO which provides, for repeated general use, the rules, guidelines or characteristics related to products, processes and associated production methods. Its application is optional. It may also include or apply to measurement and calibration; terminology; symbols; packaging and labeling; marks and data requirements that apply to a product, process, method of production, testing methods, or sampling methods. 

    The preparation of a standard is done in two ways; by a technician of technical departments according to procedures to be mentioned or by technical teams. ​

    ​​
    ​A) (Optional) Saudi Standards
    1. The preliminary draft standard is prepared in a manner consistent, in method and output, with the methodology of producing Saudi Standards. It is derived mainly from the international standard applied by the International Standardization Organization (ISO / IEC GUIDE 21-1: 2005) for the adoption of international standards.
    2. Announcement of a draft standard in (website, national newspapers, addressing relevant bodies and sectors… etc.).
    3. Concerned bodies are given a period of (60) days to study drafts and comment on them.
    4. Notes shall be taken into consideration during the specified period. Responding to notes is done if requested by the body. After responding to the notes, they are distributed again for a month.
    5. The draft is submitted to the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors (BoD) for discussion and presented to the BoD for approval.
    6. The standard is published in the Official Gazette
    7. Relevant bodies are informed of the adoption of the standard.
    B) Mandatory Saudi Standards (Technical Regulations (
    1. Where relevant international standards are available, they are used as a basis for the preparation of technical regulations, except where such international standards or their relevant parts are an ineffective or inappropriate means of achieving legitimate objectives.
    2. SASO notifies the World Trade Organization (WTO) of the draft regulation and gives a period of (60) days to receive notes from member countries of WTO.
    3. After the adoption of the draft technical regulation from SASO's BoD, it is published in the Official Gazette and the date of binding is specified

    ​ ​ ​

    1. Develop an appropriate national reference framework in accordance with unified standards of vision and objectives.
    2. Contribute to the development of quality infrastructure.
    3. Create a comprehensive program to spread the culture of quality.
    4. Contribute to achieving the highest levels of quality according to the status of each sector.
    5. Contribute to the qualification of Saudi services and products to achieve international standards.
    6. Create a system of joint work among all sectors to implement the strategy.

     

    It is a consumer awareness label that is installed (pasted) on electrical appliances such as (air conditioners, refrigerators…etc.). It includes an explanation of the performance of the device and its efficiency in rationalizing electrical power consumption. It provides the consumer with some necessary information before purchasing, in a clear, simple and easy way. The more stars a device has, the less energy it consumes.

    A mark adopted by SASO indicating the conformity of the commodity with the Saudi technical regulations or Saudi standards. The Quality Mark is defined as a mark approved by the national standardization organization.

    Yes, there are conditions to be able to obtain the Quality Mark as follows: 
    • The existence of Saudi standards for the commodity;
    • Conformity of the commodity produced by the establishment with Saudi standards;
    • Conformity of quality assurance management system at the establishment to the Technical Regulation of Saudi Quality Mark for granting the license to use Quality Mark on products for each type of commodity, and the technical conditions required to grant the license to use Quality Mark on products.

    1. An important way to guide the consumer towards commodities that conform with Saudi standards.
    2. The Quality Mark raises the consumer's satisfaction and trust on products.
    3. Contribute to increase sales.
    4. Building appropriate commercial bases to facilitate the conclusion of export agreements with foreign countries.
    5. Continuous development and improvement of the product by following modern scientific methods that work to enhance the product, improve it and increase its competitiveness in global markets.
    6. Qualifying establishments for local and international quality awards.
    7. Enhancing the reputation and fame of the establishments holding Quality Mark locally, regionally and internationally.
    8. The smooth flow of commodities obtaining Quality Mark through customs ports.
    9. Easily exporting commodities obtaining Quality Mark.
    10. Support the national economy and raise the competitiveness of Saudi products in local and international markets and work to increase Saudi exports.

     

    The aim of Quality Mark is to prove the conformity of products with the Technical Regulation of Saudi Quality Mark and Saudi standards according to the conditions specified in the Technical Regulation to grant Quality Mark on products.

    Certain conditions must be met, including the existence of Saudi standards for the commodity and the conformity of the commodity with standards as well as compliance of the quality assurance management system at the establishment with the technical regulation.

    The Saudi Quality Mark is the exclusive property of the Saudi Standards, Metrology and Quality Organization (SASO).

    The certification Administration has the authority to grant Saudi Quality Mark. For some considerations, SASO engages an external granting body, called an Authorized Body for Granting Quality Mark. In addition, the Certification Administration at SASO or Authorized Body for Granting Quality Mark shall certify the conformity of products to the requirements of granting.

    Any establishment produces or distributes commodities in accordance with the Technical Regulation of Saudi Quality Mark and Saudi Standards, and implements quality assurance management system for the production of commodities, can apply for Quality Mark.

    The license shall be valid for one year renewable automatically unless otherwise received from the establishment 30 days before the expiry of the license.​

    Yes, an advisory committee has been established. It is called the Impartial Committee for Quality Mark to work on every issue related to the activities of granting the license to use the Mark on products. The Committee consists of 5 members representing the authorized bodies appointed by the Governor for a period of 3 years; a representative of the clients of the establishments obtaining the mark, a representative of the establishments obtaining the mark, a representative of the industrial associations (or chambers of commerce), a representative of government authorities or ministries and a representative of non-governmental organizations (e.g. consumer protection associations/ quality associations / universities / consulting offices).

    The establishment shall inform SASO in writing with justification, noting that SASO is committed to dealing with the establishment's information in confidentially.

    No, a report shall be prepared on the results of the audit visit, including the results of the tests and the recommendation of granting the license to the establishment, to be presented to the Quality Mark Committee for an opinion in accordance with Article (8) of this regulation. The Committee may also request the postponement of its decision waiting for the implementation of additional evaluations as requested and at the expense of the establishment, or may request improvements in certain points or production control work.

    The license shall be for a period of one year renewable automatically unless the Certification Administration at SASO, during the follow-up work, registers the product's non-conformity or violation to the requirements, or receives a stop request by the establishment 30 days before the expiry of the license.

    Yes, there is a periodic audit at specific periods throughout the year as determined by the Technical Regulation of Saudi Quality Mark, not less than once a year and includes the same steps of the initial audit.
    Is SASO entitled to withdraw random samples of commodities

    Yes, SASO has the right to withdraw random samples of commodities obtaining Quality Mark directly from the market in addition to production lines or warehouses for testing to ensure compliance with the Technical Regulation of Saudi Quality Mark and Saudi standards.

    The Certification Administration at SASO or the Authorized Body for Granting Quality Mark shall be notified in writing, in advance. The Certification Administration at SASO or the Authorized Body for Granting Quality Mark shall notify the holder of the Mark within 15 days from the date of receiving the application of the required evaluation procedures (tests or audit visit ...) that it intends to implement on the new production site, so that the holder can continue to benefit from the license to use Quality Mark.

    The holder of Quality Mark shall inform Certification Administration at SASO or the Authorized Body for Granting Quality Mark.

    The holder of Quality Mark shall, without delay, notify the Certification Administration at SASO or the Authorized Body for Granting Quality Mark, in writing, every final end of the production of commodities licensed to use Quality Mark, or if he requested the stop of using Quality Mark in case he wishes to abandon Quality Mark, with a statement to SASO containing the quantity of his stored marked commodities and the period required to supply these commodities; not exceeding 3 months. Upon expiry of the specified period, the Certification Administration at SASO or the Authorized Body for Granting Quality Mark shall decide to revoke the license to use Quality Mark.
    In addition, the holder of Quality Mark shall, without delay, shall notify the Certification Administration at SASO or the Authorized Body for Granting Quality Mark on any legal amendments concerning the establishment and / or its representative (or the agent for establishments whose work is outside the Kingdom), or on the change of the establishment's name.

    Yes, it may apply.

    Yes, in urgent cases, in particular, in case of serious violations of safety obligations.​

    Yes, the licensee is denied the benefit of using Quality Mark.​.​

    No, the establishment should pay the costs to SASO.​

     

    The establishment shall provide SASO with a statement containing the quantity of commodities holding the Mark stored in the establishment. SASO's role is to direct the establishment to the following:
    • Destroy these commodities if the reason for the suspension or revocation of the license is that the product does not conform with the Technical Regulation of Saudi Quality Mark and Saudi standards.
    • Remove the Quality Mark from these commodities in an appropriate manner agreed upon with SASO if the reason for license revocation is license non-renewal, establishment's stop of producing commodities holding the mark or unpaid costs.

    It shall be automatically terminated in the cases stipulated in Article (14) or in the case that the reference standards of products are no longer applicable in accordance with the conditions stipulated in Article (20) below.
    In the case of incorporation, liquidation or listing of an establishment holding the Mark, all granted licenses to use Quality Mark are automatically terminated. A new application for a license to use Quality Mark should be made.

    • Laboratory of petroleum and chemical products. 
    • Laboratory of electrical and electronic products.
    •  Laboratory of mechanical and metal products.
    • Textile laboratory.
    • Construction and building materials laboratory.
    • General Materials Laboratory.
    • Vehicles Laboratory.
    • Energy efficiency laboratory.


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    • Organic tests unit.
    • Petroleum products unit.
    • Radiation unit.
    • Inorganic tests unit.
    • Food analysis unit.​


    • Petroleum oils of all kinds.
    • Detergents and disinfectants.
    • Fuel of all kinds 
    • Food of all kinds.

    • Rebar.
    • Gas ovens and cooking stoves.
    • Pressure cookers.
    • Fire extinguishers and gas cylinders.
    • Ductile, steel and welded pipes.
    • Aluminum profiles.
    • Household utensils.

    • Unit of cement and ready mixed concrete tests.
    • Unit of block tests.
    • Unit of tile and marble tests.
    • Unit of sanitary ware tests.
    • Unit of clay pipes tests. 
    • Unit of paints.

    • Cement and gypsum
    • Sanitary ware
    • Ceramics and ceramic products
    • Paints


    • Chemical testing unit.
    • Physical testing unit.
    • Fire testing unit.

    • Carpets and rugs
    • Napkins and paper
    • Tents
    • Woven fabrics
    • Shemagh ( traditional Arab men headdress)

    • Laboratory of tires and rims
    • Laboratory of insulation efficiency
    • Laboratory of insulation efficiency
    • Laboratory of fuel efficiency
    • Laboratory of electromagnetic compatibility (EMC).


    Accreditation​

    Accreditation is a formal recognition by a third party that a conformity assessment body is eligible to perform specific conformity assessment tasks after meeting all requirements of the international guides to ensure its continuity.

    It is a combination of knowledge, skills, experience and behaviors that is practiced within a specific framework and observed through field work, which gives it the status of acceptance.
     


    Conformity assessment bodies, which are:
    • Laboratories (testing and calibration);
    • Inspection bodies;
    • Certification bodies; and
    • Other bodies agreed upon within the international organizations that supervise the accreditation activity.



    A mutual recognition agreement is concluded between a group of accreditation bodies gathered by a geographical location or an economic bloc. The aim is to establish confidence in conformity certificates and standardize their standards. For an accreditation body in a particular country, to be recognized and to be a member of the agreement is after the evaluation has been carried out by delegates from different member accreditation bodies of the organization to which the country has requested to join. Furthermore, mutual recognition agreements are regulated and supervised by regional accreditation organizations.

    There are two major international accreditation organizations:
    • o International Accreditation Forum (IAF) (for bodies accrediting certification bodies)
    • International Federation for Laboratory Accreditation (ILAC) (for bodies accrediting laboratories and inspection bodies )


    Giving credibility and confidence to certificates issued by accredited conformity assessment bodies, in addition to international recognition of certificates issued by accredited bodies. Furthermore, accreditation facilitates the flow of commodities to and from international markets, raises the level of quality, and protects the consumer through certificates and reports issued by accredited bodies.
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    Last modified 28 Jul 2020
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