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Standardization the Guardian of the 13rd Five-year Plan

From:Date:2021/04/29 15:55:05

As the pandemic control and the reopening of the sewing industry yield substantial fruits, the year of 2020 has witnessed a stable growth and the successful closure of the 13rd five-year plan. Over the past 5 years, the new layout of the sewing industry has been constructed at a faster pace, the idea of high-quality development further deployed, the industrial status steadily enhanced, the industrial structure kept improving, the strength of quality brand gradually gained, innovation capacity significantly increased; moreover, the whole industry has taken the lead globally in terms of manufacture capability, sustainably built up its international competitiveness, which marks the completion of phase one targets set by the power strategy, and the eventual inclusion into global powers of sewing machinery manufacturing. And the standardization efforts made during the 13rd five-year plan has played an indispensable role behind all these successes.

Noticeable achievements after 5 years of hard work

So what are the major achievements made in the past 5 years regarding standardization?

First of all, the standard system has been further optimized through carrying out the amendment of national and industrial standards. Supported by National Technical Committee of Sewing Machinery Standardization (SAC/TC152) and Subsidiary Technical Committee of Electro Sewing Machinery Standardization (SAC/TC231/SC4), experts have formulated 3 national standards, 71 industrial standards, and promulgated and revised 6 group standards, which revamps the existing standard system into a brand-new one consisting of 12 national standards, 186 industrial standards, and 6 group standards. Furthermore, they've prepared the development program for technical standards system during the 13rd five-year plan, and proposed to draw up or amend 61 more standards. Hence, the total of industrial standards systems has grown to 258 from 208 at the end of the last five-year plan.

What's more, the current recommendatory national, industrial and local standards as well as the standard preparation and amendment programs have been reviewed collectively since the beginning of 2016, in which case, pressing problems like the overlapping and contradiction between and the obsoleteness of recommendatory standards at each level will be properly handled through nullifying, transforming or revising different standards, and conclusions including "remain effective, to be amended, invalidated, transformed or coordinated" will be drawn after the assessment of recommendatory standards one after another as per related procedure. Furthermore, 12 standards have been modified, and 37 revoked by means of combing through the sewing machinery standards system and current operation situation.

The formulation and amendment have been concentrated on standards pertaining to product, basics, method, etc, and the number of standards in areas including computer-controlled sewing machine, sewing unit, embroidery machine, special sewing machine, key parts, test method, universal technical condition rises accordingly. In the meantime, the problem of national and industrial standards lagging behind the fast-growing tech and product has been settled substantially, satisfying the demands brought by the industry to stimulate its restructuring.

Secondly, the whole industry has been actively promoting the dissemination and implementation of standards, boosting enterprises' technical advance, regulating the market orders, reinforcing the training of product quality standardization, and focusing on building a team of standardization talents. According to Wu Jianmin, former general secretary of TC152, the Committee has on one hand organized standardization promotion activities of embroidery machine in Zhuji in 2017, template machine in Taizhou in 2018 and embroidery machine terminology in Zhuji in 2019 respectively, attended by 100 practitioners in total; on the other hand, for the purpose of further strengthening the promotion activities, it has published Industrial Sewing Machinery Collection - Manual of Sewing Machinery Standards (2018) based on previous editions in 2007, 2012 and 2015. Wu said that it has substantially improved standardization works, and stimulated the promotion activities; moreover, standardization has played to the most extent its role of bolstering tech innovation and product quality improvement.

In terms of fostering talents, he noted that the Committee has held trainings to exposit the new edition of The Standardization Law of The People's Republic of China in Wujiang in December, 2017, the guidelines for drawing up terminology in Zhuji in March, 2018, and the standardization and its international situation in December, 2018; with more than 140 attendees accumulatively, these trainings help to regulate the formulation and revision of standards, building up the ability of standard preparation; furthermore, they also have a positive influence on establishing a team of highly competent standardization practitioners, underpinning the cultivation of standardization talents and enlarging the talents pool, setting up or improving the standardization department of enterprises, and shoring up the standardization works across the industry and among enterprises.

Thirdly, the whole industry has emphasized the verification of standards, improved the capacity of drafting and revising standards, and bolstered the innovation and growth of such industry. Particularly, the standard verification has been substantially strengthened over the past 5 years; through collective third-party verification covering the whole of this industry by National Quality Supervision and Inspection Center for Sewing Machines, more than 1,000 sets of data on average have been gleaned and verified each year commissioning professional quality inspectors. It has been unveiled by verification that lots of standard settings, parameters, test methods and things alike are faulty; thereafter, such faults have been extensively discussed and modified accordingly based on the verification. Laborious and time-consuming task as it is, the verification has tremendously improved the quality of standardization, and the specificity, applicability and operability of standards, according to Wang Weigang, expert from the aforesaid Center.

Enterprises have benefited the most from such cooperation. Liu Yong from TYPICAL said that the application of standards has eased enterprises' efforts to improve their product quality, the management and execution efficiency of procedures like design, craftsmanship, manufacture, inspection, which eventually makes the product more refined and stabilized. For instance, the satisfyingly held demonstration of the Group Standard for Industrial Sewing Machine - Computer-controlled High Speed Lockstitch Machine and the explanation of verification measures by National Inspection Center of Sewing Machines and related discussion have reflected the strict requirements and criteria for group standards, and have had a positive influence on raising the barriers to entry into lockstitch machine market, improving the industrial chain, reinforcing the overall competitiveness, supporting enterprises with good performance and regulating those with bad one, empowering the industry, and leading its virtuous development.

Qiu Weiming from JACK noted that it always regards customers' need as the starting point when it comes to drawing up or revising standards, and puts forward requirements, technical parameters and test methods accordingly, so that the verification of standards can closely match with the market and production. For instance, functional requirements by customers like USB port, automatic reaction, energy consumption during running, automatic positioning of needle are confirmed during the standard drafting and revising, added to related standards taking into consideration the market and customers' needs, and will be continuously regulated throughout procedures like manufacturing, inspection, in which case, the key indicators could reach or even exceed international criteria, and brands made in China could make their mark.

Benchmarking against global counterparts; a long and strenuous journey ahead

The development path of standardization over the past 5 years was guided by Construction and Development Plan of National Standard System (2016 to 2020) and the power strategy put forward by sewing machinery industry. Following the idea of deepening industrial restructuring and promoting industrial transformation and upgrade, the whole industry has managed to establish a scientific and effective mechanism of standard management and operation with quality improvement and brand construction as the opening; besides keeping completing the technical standard system compatible with industrial development, it has put great emphasis on standards promulgation, revision and promotion, actively taken part in the internationalization of standards, and fast-tracked education of standardization talents. Generally speaking, works done in the last 5 years have yielded desirable fruits, made contributions to the healthy and sustainable development of the whole industry and the continuous progress of standardization, and served as the guardian of industrial intelligence and high-quality growth.

Chen Ji, General Secretary of CSMA and TC152, added that the standardization during the 13th five-year plan has more highlights worthy of noting as below: filling the gap of high-quality technical standards, and great improvement of product quality and noticeable increase of medium and high-end market share through concertedly formulating internationally advanced and widely accepted group standards focusing on solidifying the achievements of quality improvement; regular guidance for intelligent development, foundation of technical service alliance for intelligent sewing factory through consolidating upstream and downstream resources of the industrial chain, and orderly preparation of intelligent sewing factory standards; implementation of standard internationalization through recommending experts from JACK, SGG, etc to join localized standard institutions like ISO/TC148, IEC/TC44, submitting to ISO/TC148 for the first time the proposal to draw up new international standard of Sewing Machinery Terminology - Embroidery Machine, and carrying out activities like Pioneer of Enterprises Standards.

Nevertheless, he revealed that sewing machineries around the world are currently at the key stage of transitioning from automatic to intelligent as IT is increasingly integrated with such products; though sewing industry in China is also striving for smart sewing, it still lags behind advanced international counterparts and similar industries due to the following 3 aspects: a weak industrial foundation and shortage of standardization professionals; less instructive development planning and structure of standards, failing to meet the diverse demands; and lack of elemental standards research, to-be-strengthened support and guidance to the technical development of digital and intelligent products.

"Although we have made breakthroughs regarding standardization in the past 5 years, the task of standardization construction ahead of us is still laborious and urgent."