Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Good morning, my name is Jean Rousseau. I am the senior director of the Bureau de normalisation du Québec. I am pleased to appear before the members of this committee. I would like to share with you my knowledge about the area of standardization. I hope that my answers to your questions will be able to help you with your thoughts and your inquiries.
My presence here today comes from the fact that the organization I represent is involved in the same area as the Canadian General Standards Board (CGSB) in terms of the services we provide. The Bureau de normalisation du Québec is also governmental in nature. So let me introduce you to the BNQ.
The BNQ was established by the Government of Quebec in 1961. So the BNQ is a little younger than the CGSB. Since 1990, the BNQ has been an operational branch of the Centre de recherche industrielle du Québec, which reports to Quebec's ministère de l'Économie, de l'Innovation et des Exportations. The Government of Quebec recognizes the BNQ as the central organization in matters of standardization, certification and the provision of information about standards, and as Quebec’s voice at the Canadian General Standards Board, or any other standardization body.
The initial reason for its creation was to give Quebec an organization that could draw up specifications for all procurements bought by the Government of Quebec. Since then, those needs have changed; the mission of the BNQ today is to act as a partner in business, industrial, social and governmental matters by providing solutions for their needs through the development of standards and certification programs.
The BNQ is a member organization of the Canadian General Standards Board, which is affiliated to the International Standards Organization, the ISO. It conducts its activities in the following areas: developing standards, certifying products, processes and services, and evaluating the competencies of testing and analytical laboratories.
The various accreditations, such as the Standards Council of Canada accreditation that the BNQ holds, guarantees clients that the mandates they entrust to us are conducted according to international criteria that embody best practices in standardization, certification and registration of management systems.
In conclusion, the BNQ conducts its activities in a large number of sectors, including construction, the environment, sustainable development, forestry and public works, health and safety, agriculture and agri-food. Our team has a little more than 50 employees and can call on a large network of subcontractors. In addition, the BNQ is supported by about 700 members of various committees, all of them volunteer.
There you have the organization. I have been working in the standardization area for about 30 years and I will be pleased to answer all your questions. Thank you.