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Giving You the Quality Edge

In the past few years, significant changes in global trade flow have enhanced the role of quality and standards in economic development. These global trade flows have resulted in subdued demand for South African exports to traditional trading partners, including the European Union and the United States of America. This creates the opportunity for South Africa to shift its focus to emerging economies while maintaining its drive towards improving trade within the African continent.

This is achieved by developing relevant standards that promote access to markets, while protecting local industry from low quality, cheap imports, The South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) supports government’s Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP), which promotes the localisation of production and addresses the current economic trends.

The SABS provides the platform for quality services and products which is the key differentiator in an increasingly competitive environment. The SABS strategic objective contributes to the efficient functioning of the economy by:

  • Developing standards to advance the socio-economic well-being of South Africa in the global economy.
  • Delivering relevant conformity assessment services that facilitate access to markets for South African industry, thereby improving its competitiveness in the global trade environment.

The SABS, with its rich history in standardisation, will continue to play a significant role in ensuring that industry is kept abreast of the pace of the dramatic transition of the world economy through standards development and quality assurance services, thereby providing industry with the quality edge.


SABS is a statutory body that was established in terms of the Standards Act, 1945 (Act No. 24 of 1945) and continues to operate in terms of the latest edition of the Standards Act, 2008 (Act No. 8 of 2008) as the national standardisation institution in South Africa, mandated to:

  • Develop, promote and maintain South African National Standards (SANS)
  • Promote quality in connection with commodities, products and services
  • Render conformity assessment services and assist in matters connected therewith.