The International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials has entered in a Memorandum of Agreement with the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration in support of the U.S. plumbing industry.
In particular, through this formalized strategic partnership, the partners will collaborate on a program of activities to increase U.S. plumbing exports to Southeast Asia by increasing adoption and use in that region of standards and conformity assessment methods commonly used by U.S. companies.
IAPMO works to coordinate the development and promotion of plumbing and mechanical standards worldwide and has a robust presence in the Indo-Pacific. Advocacy for standards directly benefits the American companies that use them and aligns with ITA's mission to promote U.S. standards in export markets in order to boost the competitiveness of the U.S. industry.
“We have been fortunate to work with the Department of Commerce and ITA for many years — a relationship that has proven mutually beneficial,” said IAPMO CEO GP Russ Chaney. “Together we have expanded market opportunities for the industry, increased standardization in new markets, and worked to protect the public’s health and safety across the globe. Formalizing our working relationship as strategic partners makes perfect sense, and we are thrilled to take this relationship to the next level.”
The U.S. plumbing sector is a $92 billion industry employing more than 500,000 people through more than 106,000 businesses. The U.S. plumbing manufacturing sector represents $8.4 billion of that and steadily growing, with domestic demand for plumbing products expected to rise 6.3 percent annually. Globally, U.S. plumbing manufacturers export to 198 markets worldwide to satisfy a $26 billion world plumbing market.
Through a 2013 memorandum of understanding between IAPMO and Indonesia’s national standards body, a comprehensive body of regulations, released in March 2015 as SNI 8153:2015, Plumbing Systems for Buildings, was adopted as the technical basis for Indonesia’s water/sanitation infrastructure.
As a result of IAPMO’s work, total annualized U.S. plumbing exports to Indonesia have increased by 85 percent over the pre-project period. IAPMO and ITA will coordinate outreach to U.S. government agencies on the benefits of encouraging code acceptance to support regional use of plumbing standards used by U.S. industry and U.S. plumbing product exports.
“The strategic partnership will help us to expand our existing collaboration with IAPMO in Southeast Asia,” said ITA Executive Director for Asia Jim Golsen. “IAPMO’s success and partnership with Commerce over the years makes this an ideal partnership moving forward. Codes and standards are key to promoting economic integration and growth both in the United States and Southeast Asia.”
IAPMO is the only standards development organization (SDO) or plumbing/construction industry organization to obtain recognition as a Strategic Partner with ITA, an exclusive designation that includes such brands as FedEx and UPS.