About CEN

The European Committee for Standardization is one of three European Standardization Organizations (together with CENELEC and ETSI) that have been officially recognized by the European Union and by the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) as being responsible for developing and defining voluntary standards at European level.

The Vienna Agreement

CEN Cooperation with ISO


CEN has an agreement for technical co-operation with the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). Through the involvement of experts in Technical Committees, European and national expertise is being developed and recognized globally.


The Vienna Agreement, signed in 1991, was drawn up with the aim of preventing duplication of effort and reducing time when preparing standards. As a result, new standards projects are jointly planned between CEN and ISO. Wherever appropriate priority is given to cooperation with ISO provided that international standards meet European legislative and market requirements and that non-European global players also implement these standards.

The Vienna Agreement allows expertise to be focused and used in an efficient way to the benefit of international standardization. It is completed by jointly developed Guidelines supporting the practical implementation of the Vienna Agreement.


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