Export sent for inspection

August 09, 2019

5.2 billion rubles from the federal budget will be provided for the modernization of 36 laboratories as part of the “International Cooperation and Export” national project.

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Moscow, August 5. /TASS/. The Russian Government has prepared the plan for the modernization of subordinate laboratories that will carry out certification of Russian export goods according to international standards. As stated in the protocol of the national project committee dated June 17 that is at the disposal of the portal “Future of Russia. National Projects”, modernization (one of the goals under the “International Cooperation and Export” national project) will affect 36 Russian laboratories and cost 5.2 billion rubles.

A list of laboratories was confirmed by the source close to one of the members of the committee. The number of centers and the amount of financing confirmed by the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation.

According to Vasily Osmakov, the Deputy Minister for Industry and Trade, “Modernization will allow to reduce the expenses of Russian exporters and provide for the recognition of test results on external markets in the future”.

After modernization these centers will certify potentially important export goods, such as food products, machinery, medical supplies and others.

Proof of feasibility

The national export project provides for the substantial grow in a number of non-oil and gas, non-energy supplies abroad – up to 250 billion rubles by the year 2024. One of the barriers that impeded achieving this figure was, according to experts, the need to certify the goods abroad. It was long and expensive, three to five times more expensive than performing tests for the domestic market, as it was required to confirm the conformity to requirements separately for each country.

Membership in the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC MRA) allows to get a single certificate accepted in a dozen of countries. Having been created in 1977 for facilitating international trade, this organization consolidates dozens of countries and accreditation bodies. Russia joined the partnership in 2017. The then subordinate to the Ministry of Economic Development RusAccreditation has become a member of ILAC and gained the right to determine laboratories that may use this combined conformity mark.

“The responsible agencies were unanimous in that Russia has to create laboratories that could test products just like in the countries of potential export, but cheaper, faster and more convenient for the exporter. It is crucial to ensure international recognition of these laboratories and traceability of their activity. The cost of a mistake when testing products results in reputational and financial expenditures for the exporter due to the return of products, and also in the possibility for our manufacturer to be included by importing countries in special “high-risk” lists,” says RusAccreditation.       

Modernization of Russian reference laboratories will allow them to comply with ILAC requirements and issue international certificates of conformity to exporters. Arrangement of laboratories is stipulated in the federal project “Systematic Measures to Develop International Cooperation and Export”. The Ministry of Industry and Trade is responsible for implementing the project, while the federal executive bodies are responsible for the modernization itself.

At the same time, the federal project implied modernization of no fewer than 25 laboratories, however in fact the plan provides for the modernization of 36 laboratories in 16 cities across Russia, including the ones in Vladivostok, Rostov-on-Don and Saint-Petersburg, says Osmakov.       

According to RusAccreditation, out of the chosen 36 laboratories 10 are subordinate to Rosselkhoznadzor, 9 to Rospotrebnadzor, 6 to Rosstandard, 5 to Roszdravnadzor, 3 to the Ministry of Industry and Trade. Ministry of Education and Science, the Federal Medical and Biological Agency and MES each has one laboratory. They will perform tests of products with the highest export potential, such as food products, feedstuff, mineral fertilizers, construction materials and articles, medications and medical supplies, perfumes and cosmetics, machinery and fire-fighting equipment, noted the Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade.

Modernization plan

The Ministry of Industry and Trade points out that no new laboratories are planned to be built, only existing centers will undergo modernization. Some of them do not require additional financing, while others, on the other hand, need substantial financing and may undergo modernization for as long as several years.

In 2019 it is planned to modernize 16 laboratories and spend 671.6 million rubles on it, in 2020 – 17 laboratories (the cost of works is 1.961 billion rubles), in 2021 – 13 laboratories (945.5 million rubles). In 2022 it is planned to upgrade 10 test centers (641.8 million rubles) and in 2023 – 8 test centers (538 million rubles). The cheapest in terms of costs of modernization will be the year 2024 when 6 remaining laboratories undergo modernization for 435 million rubles.

This being said, already in 2020 no less than 15% of the tests should be done in compliance with the methods accepted abroad, while in 2024 - no less than 40%. Within the framework of modernization centers will get equipment and methods required for test procedures, will be able to issue protocols with the combined ILAC MRA mark that are accepted in target countries for exporting Russian goods, including additional requirements (Halal, for instance), explains RusAccreditation.

There are also private laboratories that operate in Russia, apart from public centers.

RusAccreditation underlines that “It goes without saying that the plan for reference laboratories does not impede other laboratories from undergoing the necessary procedure in RusAccreditation for gaining the right to use the combined mark of the national accreditation system and the ILAC MRA mark, and to test products for compliance with the requirements of external markets”.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade together with the Industry Development Fund is elaborating a separate mechanism of support for private centers. Osmakov adds that “in particular, granting loans for purchasing equipment at preferential interest rates is being studied already”.

// Future of Russia