GOST is a state standard. So main standards in the USSR were called, today transnational standards effective in the CIS are called so. They are enacted by transnational councils engaged in standardization, metrology and certification.

GOSTs that were developed and enacted till 1996 were documents of normative and juridical nature and their requirements were mandatory for economic agents. Standards that came into effect after 1996 stopped to be mandatory. This is explained by reform in legal system: normative document that is not registered in Ministry of Justice is not considered to be mandatory. Now GOSTs are considered to be normative but not juridical acts. Till 2011 only those parts of GOSTs were considered mandatory that dealt with consumers’ health and property protection, environmental protection. In 2011 GOSTs that were not registered in Ministry of Justice lost their mandatory nature and their requirements started to be used voluntarily.

Another reform happened in 2002 after Federal Law No 184-FZ “On technical regulation” was issued. From that time the notion of “standard” and that of “technical regulation” have been separated.

GOST system, like any other system of standards, has certification. It appeared already in the USSR times and has been in use till now. Today a huge number of standards that temporarily are not substituted with technical regulations are used in the RF. Development of the latter takes considerable amount of time, so GOST certification has not lost its relevance.

Necessity of carrying out GOST certification is defined in Government resolution No 982 enacted in 2009.  It lists names of goods subjected to certification and their statistical codes. If specific type of goods is absent in the above resolution, it is certified voluntary.

GOST certification can be carried out only by those certification agencies that are accredited by Rosstandart.