August 24, 2000

United Nations' Global Agreement on Technical Standards for Automobiles to Go into Effect

United Nations' "Agreement Concerning the Establishing of Global Technical Regulations for Wheeled Vehicles, Equipment or Parts Which Can Be Fitted and/or Be Used on Wheeled Vehicles" (so-called "Global Agreement <1998 Agreement>") will go into full effect tomorrow.

This Agreement was drawn primarily by Japan, the United States, and EU governments and adopted by the United Nations in June 1998. Japan signed the Agreement to be valid -- signed the Agreement on July 31 this year so the Agreement can go into effect. The eight countries are Canada, the United States, Japan, France, Britain, EU, Germany, and Russia.

Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA) and Japan Auto Parts Industries Association (JAPIA) welcome the signing, as they have urged the Agreement to be put into effect as soon as possible. The associations are also grateful to the Japanese government, which played an important role in the successful outcome.

The official effectuation of the Agreement has paved the way for global standards to be established. The Agreement will ensure steady promotion of safety and environmental standard harmonization around the world. The automobile and auto part industries anticipate major economic benefits including lower costs for developing new technologies and cost savings from using common parts.

JAMA and JAPIA have already drawn draft global standards for a number of items with the cooperation of auto industry associations and part industry associations from around the world through OICA (International Organization of Motor Vehicle Manufacturers) or IMMA (International Motorcycle Manufacturers Association) and have submitted them to United Nations ECE/WP29 (World Forum for Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations). JAMA and JAPIA expect that more global standards will be steadily established in the near future.

JAMA and JAPIA will cooperate with the government and related organizations more than ever before to develop global standards.


Hiroshi Okuda, Chairman/Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association
Haruo Ohno, Chairman/Japan Auto Parts Industries Association

[ Reference]

Fields in which JAMA and JAPIA anticipate global technical standards to be set based on the Global Agreement (1998 Agreement).

  • OICA; International Organization of Motor Vehicle Manufacturers
    1. Short-term targets by around 2002*
      1. Wipers and washers
      2. *Defrosters and demisters
      3. *Seatbelts
      4. Door strength
      5. Vehicle fire protection (fuel system)
      6. Theft protection system
      7. Seat strength
      8. *Window glass
    2. Mid-term targets by around 2005
      1. Pedestrian protection
      2. Front collision standard
      3. Side collision standard
      4. Noise measurement method
      5. Diesel exhaust emission testing method
    3. Long-term targets by around 2010

      Method of measuring exhaust emissions from small cars

  • IMMA; International Motorcycle Manufacturers Association
    1. Noise measurement method
    2. Brakes
    3. Control displays
    4. *Headlamps
    5. Mirrors

*: Items that the industry has recommended to WP29