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UNE consolidates itself as a social and economic benchmark after its key response to beat COVID-19


The Spanish Association for Standardization, UNE, today held its General Assembly during which it presented its 2020 Annual Activity Report, a year in which it focused its efforts on alleviating the health emergency and supporting the recovery of the Spanish economy in the face of the crisis caused by COVID-19. The outstanding contribution made by the Spanish standardisation body in the battle to overcome coronavirus consolidates it as a social and economic benchmark, as well as garnering it several recognitions.

Under the title "Standardization. By your side. Now and always", UNE's 2020 Annual Report reveals the Organisation's key role in overcoming the health and economic emergency.

At the outset of the pandemic, and faced with the shortage of medical devices and PPE, UNE made the essential health material standards and other documents available free of charge to facilitate their production with quality, safety and speed.

Thanks to this measure, all interested parties were able to download more than 55,000 documents, the market value of which would exceed five million euros. This is an exceptional measure, as income from the sale of standards is fundamental to the sustainability of the Spanish standardisation development model.

This earned it the recognition of the Spanish Network of the UN Global Compact, who included it in the "COVID-19 Initiatives"

In addition, UNE also developed, in record time, several business management and product quality and safety standards for reducing risks against coronavirus, together with other relevant sector associations who are also UNE members. The standards developed cover areas, such as hygienic masks, tourism, funeral facilities and UV-C equipment used for sterilising air flows, all promoting safety and trust.

2025 Strategic Plan

The UNE General Assembly has approved its Strategic Plan until 2025, which is based on three strategic objectives: provide solutions to the challenges facing society, to carry out its digital transformation and to be recognised as an exemplary organisation in Spanish society and the productive fabric.

These objectives establish the steps that will guide UNE to achieving its mission, helping to promote the competitiveness of companies and the development of society with standards that generate trust.

The 2015 Strategic Plan provides continuity to the 2019-2021 Plan. In this regard, 2020 was its second year of implementation, with a positive result and a 79% degree of compliance, between the actions implemented and those in progress.

Main figures 2020

In 2020, UNE incorporated 1,999 new standards, 7.5% more, bringing the Spanish standards catalogue to a total of 33,970 standards, making it one of the most extensive catalogues in the world.

Spain is an international leader in standardisation, at the forefront of the world in standards for accessibility, tourism, sustainability in construction, compliance, intelligent cities and innovation, among other fields. In addition, Spanish experts assumed 17 new international and European responsibilities in 2020, bringing the total figure to 144.

The public entity also released the Reports Support for Standardization of the Ecological Transition and Support for the Standardization of Digital Transformation in order to guide the economic sectors through this two-fold transition.

Also relevant is the facilitating role of standards in achieving the UN's 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) from the 2030 Agenda.

UNE is made up of over 500 members representing practically the entire Spanish production fabric, making it a model case of public-private collaboration.