BSTI: History and activities

Md. Rezaul Karim Sarker


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Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution (BSTI) came into being in 1985 through an ordinance (Ordinance No. xxvii of 1985) with the merge of Bangladesh Standards Institution (BDSI) and the Central Testing Laboratories (CTL). The BSTI is a corporate body and the Ministry of Industries is its administrative ministry.

Background of BSTI

In 1946, Indian Standards Institute (ISI) initiated the standards institution in this subcontinent. After abolish of the British Government,   Pakistan and India were Independent in 1947. After a decade Pakistan Standards Institute (PSI) was establish. From before CTL was establish in Dhaka under the action of Colombo plan. PSI started its activity in Dhaka in 1963. After independence of Bangladesh, BDSI and CTL started to act as a different organization. CTL was pure govt. organization and BDSI was a semi govt. organization.

On 16th May 1983, the cabinet decided to unify the CTL and BDSI which was under the Science & Technology Ministry. On 25th July 1985, BSTI was born by memorandum of Ordinance of Govt. In 1995 the agriculture product distribution and classification (Ministry of Commerce) department was also mergd with BSTI. At present, BSTI acts as an autonomous body under the Ministry of Industries.


Industrial product, food product, chemical product which are manufactured in Bangladesh and also imported, BSTI is responsible to produce standards, controlling and guarantee and also testing as per standards. The formulation and implementation of metric system in weights and measures all over the country BSTI plays an important role. BSTI council is the highest decision making body presided over by the minister, the ministry of industries. Director General (DG) is the member secretary of BSTI council. DG is appointed by Ministry of Industries who acts as the chief executive of the organization also. BSTI has six wings by which it plays important role, of whose chief is director. At present it has six divisional offices and 3 districts offices. Another old (five) district offices will be established soon. BSTI always tries to serve its activities honestly and sincerly.

The six wings (divisions) of BSTI  are as follows-

Standard Wing: Standard wing formulate National Standards to produce standard, there are some divisional and technical committees unedr this wing. These are here.

Divisional committees are-

i)                Agriculture and Food

ii)         Chemical

iii)        Civil Engineering

iv)        Electrical Engineering

v)         Jute and Textile

Divisional committees are higher committees that examine and approve the finalized draft standard by technical committee


Technical/divisional committees

Technical committees are approved by the divisional committees responsible for preparing the Bangladesh Standards (BDS).

BSTI produced more than 2000 standards which include ISO, IEC, HACCP, CODEX and ISO 9000 and 14000 also. As a National Standards Body (NSB) BSTI acts as an focal point of ISO, CODEX and AFIT.

Physical Testing Wings: Physical Testing consists of civil, physical and mechanical, Electrical and Electronics Engineering and Textile Division.

Chemical Testing Wings: Chemical Testing Wing consists of chemical and food & Bacteriology divisions. Chemical Laboratories have chemical & food sections.

Administration Wing: Establi-shment, appointment, transfer, promotion, financial affairs, planning and developments activities are done by the administration wing. Co-operation among the wings activities are also perform by this wing.

Certification Marks Wing: CM is responsible to control and ensure the products standards as per Bangladesh Standards (BDS). This wing also responsible for controlling the product standard in field level and encourage the manufacturer to produce standard product.

Field officer is the inspection officer who inspect, guide, advice and compel to produce standard product. If all the documents submitted with application are satisfactory a preliminary inspection of the manufacturing premises will be carried out. During this inspection the firm’s manufacturing capability and controls, quality control techniques, facilities available and the technical skills of the personnel are evaluated. Samples of the product are transfer for testing in BSTI or other Independent Laboratories. If the company’s facilities and quality assurance system are satisfactory and the product tested at the preliminary inspection conform to the relevant standard, a second formal evaluation will be arranged. If the company’s facilities or the quality assurance system is found to be unsatisfactory or if the product samples do not conform to the relevant standard, the application will be rejected and the company advised accordingly. The preliminary inspection carried out on a mutually agreed date, usually within a month of the receipt of the application.

The management of BSTI is committed to implement its certification schemes in the best possible way to obtain maximum satisfaction of consumers licenses and all other stakeholders. They will act to continuously enhance satisfaction of its customers from industry services and other organization who utilize BSTI services.

The CM wing of BSTI is committed to render its services in full compliance of ISO/IEC Guide 65:1996(General requirement for bodies operating product certification systems).

BSTI are conducting mobile court and surveillance programme with or without the help of administration and police department. The manufacturer/producer who do not interested or ignore product certificate or use BSTI marks without taking product license BSTI initiate necessary legal step to punish them.

Also all licensees are subject to surveillance on a regular basis. The surveillance is conducted by competent persons appointed by BSTI and in accordance with documented procedures. BSTI retains the rights to suspend or withdraw certification in event of non compliance with the terms of the certification agreement.