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BIS certificate for import in India

3. May 2023

What does “BIS” in BIS Certification stand for?

BIS stands for “Bureau of Indian Standards” and emerged in 1986 from the “Indian Standards Institution” (ISI). The ISI had been in existence since 1947 and was the responsible agency for certifying production quality in India, but had limited authority in writing and enforcing standards. In order to strengthen the ISI in its function, it was therefore elevated to the status of “Bureau of Indian Standards” (BIS) in 1986 and from then on was also responsible for the formulation of standards.

What is the BIS?

Since the Bureau has also been responsible for the drafting of various Indian standards, its powers and responsibilities have been steadily increasing. In addition to its own IS Standards (“IS”, literally “Indian Standard”), the BIS also drafts the standards of the CDSCO (Central Drugs Standard Control Organization, responsible for the approval of all medical products and pharmaceuticals).

According to a statement by the Indian Minister of Food Supply Ram Vilas Paswan in September 2019 (see also, the BIS is to unite all certifications in India over time so that there are no more overlapping certifications. Currently, there may still be multiple certifications for many product groups, e.g. BIS for electronics, WPC for a wireless module, and TEC because the product is used in telecommunications.

What is the BIS and its BIS approval currently responsible for in India?

In addition to drafting and publishing standards, the BIS is also a full certification authority. The process of BIS approval for import in India includes several separately administered certification regimes with different areas of application:

Systems CertificationISO-Certification for companies
Product CertificationCompulsory Registration Scheme (CRS)Certification for electrical products of frequent changes and updates, many IT and auxiliary products; only tests in India, no factory inspection
Foreign Manufacturer Certification Scheme (FMCS)Mandatory ISI„Indian Standards Institution“-certification, incl. tests in India and factory audits
Voluntary ISIMainly commodities, otherwise equal to the obligatory certification

Depending on the product group, product certifications include different markings that must be affixed to the products or the labels of the products. You can find more information in the corresponding glossary article.

How do I get the BIS approval for import in India?

As already described, there are two possible certification procedures for foreign companies. Whether you need BIS-ISI or BIS-CRS approval depends on the product group.
The ISI and CRS certifications have one major difference: Factory Inspection. Find out more in this overview about the BIS approval:

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Robert Goral

MPR Author

Robert Goral

Robert Goral