In response to the recommendation of the ILAC Laboratory Committee, the ILAC General Assembly members voted overwhelmingly to initiate a new work item proposal (NWIP) to revise ISO/IEC 17025:2005. The Executive Committee with the critical support of the Secretariat is expected to complete the task shortly after its mid-year meeting. The NWIP would then be considered for adoption by the ISO Conformity Assessment Policy Committee (CASCO) up to a year before ISO/IEC 17025 would be due for review in 2015. The Accreditation Committee has set up a working group to address areas for improvement of the standard which really has not been significantly changed since 1999. Eric Oehlenschlaeger of DANAK and Barbara Belzer of NVLAP have been named co-conveners of this AIC working group.
I am pleased to note the excellent Fact Sheet: Specifying accreditation in Regulation (click here) produced by the joint ILAC MCC/IAF CMC which provides a convenient guide to citing the ILAC Arrangement to support regulation.
I am also gratified to note that ILAC Arrangement signatory accreditation is available to any laboratory or inspection body no matter where they are located. Furthermore, progress is being made to have all economies of the world covered by a regional accreditation cooperation.
There will be more on these developments later this year.
See you in Bangkok!
Alan Squirrell retires after 32 outstanding years
The end of 2013 marked the conclusion of a 32 year journey for Alan Squirrell. Alan, whose contributions to accreditation stretched across several continents and touched on many lives, was honoured at a presentation in the Sydney office conducted by Annette Dever, ILAC Secretary. She said Alan had made numerous contributions to accreditation including an understanding of the importance of reference materials and proficiency testing. “He forged strong ties and great working relationships. His was a really outstanding career both in Australia and internationally.”
Alan was born in the UK in 1949. He earned a BSc(Hons) in Applied Chemistry 1971 and received a Certificate of Education (Post-graduate) 1972 Prior to joining NATA he worked as an analytical chemist for a pharmaceutical company in the UK for four years and then spent seven years as a senior school science teacher both in the UK and Australia.
Annette recalled that Alan started with NATA on 4 September, 1981 as manager of Chemical Testing. He held this position for seven years (1982 –1989) with responsibility for the surveillance and accreditation of 550 chemical laboratories in Australia. During this time he was directly involved in the on-site assessment of over 500 laboratories, both in Australia and overseas.
Then in 1990 he became Manager of Proficiency Testing which was then a part of NATA. He worked in this role for eight years (1990 – 1998) and held responsibility for the design and implementation of NATA and APLAC Proficiency Testing Programs for Australian and overseas calibration and testing laboratories (approximately 35 programs per annum).
In 1994, he co-convened the ILAC working Group to prepare ISO:Guide 43 Part 1. In 1999 Alan took on the position of Technical Adviser which mainly involved international activity associated with ILAC (and the Regional co-operations), BIPM and ISO, particularly in relation to technical matters associated with linking accreditation to metrology (eg traceability, measurement uncertainty, proficiency testing, and reference materials).
Much of Alan’s time was spent travelling, representing NATA in APLAC and ILAC. More recently he was actively involved with the development and implementation of the ILAC Mutual Recognition Arrangement and held the position of the ILAC Secretary from 2001-2006. Since 2007, he has worked part-time as the ILAC Executive Liaison Officer and regularly attended meetings held by ILAC’s international partners (e.g. WADA, ISOCASCO, ISO-REMCO and BIPM).
Alan told his audience that it’s important to promote the benefits of what we do: “The work can be quite stressful but at the end of the day NATA has very competent people. We have a lot to offer our colleagues around the world. It’s very satisfying that other countries including poorer ones and developing nations have been able to develop their own accreditation systems. We need to promote good science. Keep fighting the good fight and don’t be afraid of the difficult things. Working with organisations like WADA can be challenging but also very rewarding. I’ve been very lucky to work with people who believe in what they do.”
Some of Alan’s many professional qualifications include:
Member of the Royal Australian Chemical Institute (RACI)
Association of Official Agricultural Chemists (AOAC) (USA)
International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC) - Secretary 2001-2006
Co-Operation on International Traceability in Analytical Chemistry (CITAC) – past Chairman 1996 – 1999
Asia Pacific Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (APLAC) - Past Chairman, Proficiency Testing Committee 1995-2002
From the Archives - The first ILAC Conference in 1977
The Co-Founders of ILAC Howard I. Forman and Per Lund Thoft in action at the first ILAC conference held in Copenhagen in 1977.
ILAC Secretariat Update
World Accreditation Day
The theme for World Accreditation Day to be celebrated on June 9th 2014 is Accreditation: Delivering confidence in the provision of energy. A joint statement from the Chairs of ILAC and IAF, as well as promotional materials for use in the celebrations are available from World Accreditation 2014 (click here) . A short promotional video is available from World Accreditation Day video (click here).
As in previous years, the day will be celebrated across the world with the hosting of major national events, seminars, and press and media coverage, to communicate the value of accreditation to Government, Regulators, leaders of the business community and consumers.
To find out what is happening locally to you, please contact your local accreditation body (click here) for further details.
The ILAC Arrangement
As at 7 April 2014, there were 85 Signatories (Full Members) to the ILAC Arrangement, representing 70 economies. Full details on the signatories and the use of the ILAC MRA to promote the acceptance of calibration, test and inspection results from laboratories and inspection bodies accredited by the signatories to the ILAC MRA is available from the ILAC website (click here)
New ILAC website
ILAC is in the process of developing a new website. This project is currently progressing well and the website developers are finalising the structure of the new website in preparation for the transfer of the information and testing phases.
The website includes several new features that will improve the availability of information, such as:
- a dedicated search for the signatories to the ILAC MRA;
- consolidation of the information on the signatories to the ILAC MRA to one page from the current 3 pages;
- a specific area for regulators and users of the ILAC MRA;
- link to the directories of accredited proficiency testing providers and reference material producers where available in addition to the current links to accredited laboratories and inspection bodies; and
- links to social media addresses, eg twitter, facebook, youtube, linkedin, and news or RSS feeds for Full members of ILAC;
In addition an on-line commenting and voting system is being developed. This will improve the efficiency of these processes for both the members and the Secretariat.
The new brochures Accreditation: Facilitating world trade and The Route to Signing the IAF or ILAC Arrangements as well as a Fact sheet: Specifying accreditation in Regulation are available from the brochures page of the ILAC Website (click here)
In addition, two new publications have recently been added to the members area of the ILAC website. The Global Accreditation System provides information on the role and structure of ILAC and IAF as well as information on the way the committees work and the obligations of members to ensure ILAC and IAF meet their objectives. The Social Media Guide provides simple guidelines, drawn from the experience of those members of ILAC and IAF that have established a successful online presence, to help accreditation bodies less experienced in this arena to build relationships and promote accreditation with customers, regulators and stakeholders and at the same time avoid the potential pitfalls.
The annual meetings for 2013 were hosted by our colleagues from the Korean Agency for Technology and Standards (KATS) – (Korea Laboratory Accreditation Scheme (KOLAS) & Korea Accreditation System (KAS) & Korea Accreditation Board (KAB)) in Seoul, Korea between 16 and 25 October 2013. The meetings were very productive and saw the continuation in the positive feedback received from members in relation to the Orientation Session, which was specifically designed to provide information about the structure and operation of ILAC and IAF, for new members and new delegates. The orientation session was well attended and there was good interaction between the ILAC and IAF Chairs and the audience. After two successful sessions this meeting has now become a standard feature in the program for the annual meetings.
Special thanks go to our all of our colleagues from KATS, KOLAS, KAS and KAB, for the excellent facilities and arrangements provided throughout the meetings.
The ILAC Marketing and Communications Committee (MCC) held its first meeting for 2014 in conjunction with the IAF CMC on 5, 6 and 7 February in Kyoto. The Accreditation Committee (AIC), Laboratory Committee (LC) and the Proficiency Testing Working Group (PTWG) held meetings in Oslo from 7 to 10 April. The WADA- AIC Working Group met on 11 April and the WADA ISL Assessor Training course was held on 10 April in Montreux, Switzerland.
The 2014 mid-year meetings will be held from 23 – 29 April 2014 and the location is the same as for 2013, which is the Le Meridien Park Hotel in Frankfurt, Germany. The meeting website is now available for members to register and make accommodation bookings (click here). The ILAC Inspection Committee (IC), Arrangement Management Committee (AMC), the joint meeting of the ILAC and IAF management committees (JMC), ILAC Executive Committee and the joint meeting of the ILAC and IAF Executives (JEC) will be held during this period.
Information about other ILAC Committee meetings can be found in the Accreditation Calendar of Events on the ILAC website under the Events tab.
The annual meetings for 2014 are being hosted by NSC Thailand in collaboration with the Thai Industrial Standards Institute (TISI ONAC), Department of Medical Sciences (DMSc) and Department of Science Service (DSS), in Bangkok, Thailand. The dates have been confirmed as 8 – 17 October 2014.
ILAC membership as at 7 April 2014 is as follows:
- 85 Full Members (Signatories to the ILAC Arrangement) representing 70 economies;
- 16 Associates representing 28 economies;
- 18 Affiliates representing 22 economies;
- 6 Regional Cooperation Bodies
- 23 Stakeholders
The ILAC membership (total 148 members) now covers a total of 112 different economies worldwide and approximately 45,000 laboratories and over 7,000 inspection bodies are accredited by the 84 ILAC Full Members (signatories to the ILAC Arrangement).
The ILAC Executive Committee is resuming work on the revision of the ILAC Articles and Bylaws, with assistance being provided by the EA representative on the Executive Committee, Vagn Andersen, regarding the changes that EA were required to make to their rules in order to comply with current Dutch law, as ILAC will in many instances require the same changes to be made.
The revision of the ILAC Strategic Plan is progressing in accordance with the timeframes agreed by the ILAC Executive. The Strategic Plan Task Force has been working closely with the facilitator, Graham Talbot, and the results of this work are now included in the draft document and associated activity plan that have been distributed to the ILAC Executive Committee in preparation for the Executive Committee’s strategic planning session in Frankfurt in April. If progress continues as scheduled, a draft document will be submitted to members for a 60 day comment period in June this year.
A new fee formula for calculating ILAC membership fees was approved by the General Assembly in October 2013 and the invoices for 2014, reflecting the agreed changes, were sent to all members on the 31 January 2014. The General Assembly also agreed to the introduction of a $500 (AUD) application fee for new membership applications, during the Seoul meetings.
Work continues on the registration and licensing arrangements for the ILAC MRA Mark, with some significant progress being made recently towards achieving a reliable but simplified option for the licensing process. This will also include the option to use the ILAC MRA Mark in relation to accredited inspection activities, in accordance with ILAC Resolution GA 17.13.
The ILAC and IAF Executive Committees are currently reviewing the MoU between ILAC, IAF and OIML in accordance with the commitment to review and re-sign the MoU every three years. Once the revised draft is agreed between the Executive groups of the three organisations, ILAC and IAF members will be provided with the opportunity to review the draft in the usual way. It is proposed that the revised MoU could be signed during the IAF/ILAC Annual meetings in October 2014.
The Adopted Resolutions of the 17th ILAC General Assembly can be downloaded from the ILAC website (click here).
ILAC was again represented at a number of important meetings in late 2013 and early 2014. Meetings attended include the following: ISO CASCO Chairman’s Policy Committee (CPC), the Strategic Alliance and Regulatory Group (STAR) and the Technical Interface Group (TIG), IAF/ILAC/ISO Joint Working Group, CASCO Plenary, TC 69 and ISO/REMCO. ILAC also participated in meetings of CCQM, the Joint Committees on Guides in Metrology (JCGM), Traceability in Laboratory Medicine (JCTLM), the Cooperation on International Traceability in Analytical Chemistry (CITAC), meetings of the WADA Laboratory Committee and the regular March round of meetings with OIML and BIPM. ILAC and IAF were represented at the International Committee of Legal Metrology (CIML) annual meetings in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
The ILAC and IAF Chairs also gave a presentation at the WTO/TBT workshop on 29 November 2013 which was well received by the audience in attendance.
At the ILAC/IAF Annual meetings in Seoul, we received presentations from representatives from a number of our liaison organisations including, WADA, BIPM, ISO, IEC, UNIDO and OIML.
In addition to the meetings noted above, the ILAC Chair will also be representing ILAC in a number of different forums throughout the first half of 2014, culminating in participation in the World Accreditation Day celebrations of five different ILAC members over a two week period.
The Liaison information page, located in the members area of the ILAC website, continues to serve as the main repository for the reports and documents produced as part of ILAC’s liaison activity. It has been redesigned and simplified to provide clear identification of the information available as well as details of the liaison officers and alternates for each ILAC liaison role, together with the dates of the upcoming meetings of each group. This now provides a quick option to obtain all the pertinent information relating to a particular liaison activity in one location.
The liaison section can be accessed via the members area of the ILAC website. (ILAC members who have not as yet sought access to the Members Area of the website can do so on-line, via the ‘Home’ page of the website). ILAC thanks all of the ILAC liaison officers, and their organisations, who volunteer their time to assist ILAC in carrying out these activities for the benefit of all ILAC members.
The ILAC Secretariat commenced 2014 minus its longest serving member, Alan Squirrell. As the majority of members will know, Alan served as the ILAC Secretary from 2001 to 2006 and as the ILAC Executive Liaison from 2007 until his retirement on 16 January 2014. While his knowledge and humour will be greatly missed by the secretariat staff, we have many fond and funny memories from the last 13 years and we wish him all the very best as he commences his well-earned opportunity to spend some time on his many other interests.
The ILAC Secretariat is currently staffed as follows: Annette Dever, Sharon Kelly, Rana Baleh, Rose Bevins and Joelle Nicolas.
A complete list of all documents, that have been (or are being) circulated to members for either comments or voting, can be obtained from the ILAC website in the Members Section under Ballots or Comments as appropriate.
Further information on ILAC can be obtained from the ILAC website, or by emailing the Secretariat on email@example.com.
ILAC MCC and IAF CMC
Committee Meetings in Kyoto
The ILAC Marketing and Communications Committee (MCC), IAF Communications Marketing Committee (CMC) and Joint Communication meetings were recently held in Kyoto, Japan over three days from 5-7 February 2014 hosted by IAJapan and JAB.
The participating organizations were ACCREDIA, ACLASS/ANAB, A2LA, CNAS, DANAK, IIOC, ILAC, JIPDEC, KAB, NATA, PAC, TAF, UKAS, IAJapan, and JAB.
The ILAC MCC & IAF CMC Chair Jon Murthy welcomed delegates of the ILAC MCC on the first day. After the introductions and review of the minutes of the last meeting, the delegates discussed the various agenda items covering a number of topics. To update current status of “Translation of ILAC Promotional Documents,” the progress on translation of various ILAC brochures into German, Hebrew and Portuguese were reported and that they will be uploaded to the ILAC website. The Committee also discussed additional Good News Stories to be shared by JAB and TAF which will be listed on the ILAC website.
Revision of ILAC R4:03/2010 Use of the ILAC Logo and Tagline was also discussed as another important issue as it concerns how we deal with ILAC logo in the future. Other topics discussed included ILAC’s new website development, ILAC e-News, and the MCC Strategic Plan Work Items.
The delegates spend the second day discussing Joint ILAC / IAF Communication items focused on publicity activities from the viewpoints of both ILAC and IAF with topics ranging from World Accreditation Day, Joint Brochures, Documents, and Internal Communications.
The IAF CMC meeting was held on the third day with further discussion of the previous day’s topics, followed by exchanges of views on Promotion and Documents, IAF Newsletters and Bulletins, the IAF website and the CMC Strategic Plan.
Over the three days, the meetings provided delegates an opportunity to deepen real-time communication in a same time zone facilitated by traditional Kyoto cuisine and authentic cultures.
The delegates will meet again in October this year at the 2014 Joint Annual IAF-ILAC meetings to be held in Bangkok, Thailand.
AFRAC First Peer Evaluations
KENYA ACCREDITATION SERVICE (KENAS) PRE-PEER EVALUATION: 26 – 30 AUGUST 2013
The first pre-peer evaluation undertaken by African Accreditation Cooperation (AFRAC) was jointly undertaken with the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC). The AFRAC-ILAC joint pre-peer evaluation of the Kenya Accreditation Service (KENAS) took place from 26 – 30 August 2013. The scopes were Calibration, Inspection, Quality Management Systems (QMS), and Environmental Management Systems (EMS). This was an important milestone towards AFRAC providing evidence to ILAC that it can run a Regional Accreditation Cooperation, as well as exposing its trainee evaluators in order to qualify and register them.
The Lead Evaluator was Mr Geoff Hallam (ILAC) and the team consisted of: Mrs Christinah Leballo from the South African National Accreditation System (SANAS), Mrs Maureen Mutasa from the Southern African Development Community Accreditation Service (SADCAS), Eng. Mahmoud Eltayeb from the Egyptian Accreditation Council (EGAC), Mrs Sonia Mahdoui Ep Melki from the Tunisia Accreditation Council (TUNAC) and Mr Neville Tayler (ILAC Calibration Expert-SANAS).
The evaluation summary report and findings were presented to the KENAS Management Team on 30August 2013.
(Peer Evaluators at the opening meeting of the KENAS Pre-Peer Evaluation)
TUNISIA ACCREDITATION COUNCIL (TUNAC) PEER EVALUATION: 12 – 16 DECEMBER 2013
The second AFRAC peer evaluation was a joint evaluation between AFRAC and the Arab Accreditation Cooperation (ARAC) on the Tunisia Accreditation Council (TUNAC) and took place from 12 – 16 December 2013 for Certification, Inspection, Testing, and Calibration.
The Team Leader and evaluator for the Management System Certification (QMS, EMS, and FSMS) was Mr Salih Yüksel from the Turkish Accreditation Agency (TURKAK). The team consisted of: Eng. Mahmoud Eltayeb (EGAC) as an evaluator for Inspection, Mr Marcel Gbaguidi of LQT Consulting-Senegal as a trainee evaluator for Testing, Mr Gokhan Birbil (TURKAK) as evaluator for Calibration, Mr Adel Rezk (EGAC) Egypt as a trainee peer evaluator for Calibration, and Mr Ahmad Jallad from the Palestinian Laboratories Accreditation Committee (PLAC) as a trainee evaluator for Testing.
The evaluation summary report and findings were presented to the TUNAC Management team on the 16December 2013.
EGYPTIAN ACCREDITATION COUNCIL (EGAC) PEER EVALUATION: 1 – 6 FEBRUARY 2014
The third AFRAC peer evaluation was a joint evaluation between AFRAC and ARAC on EGAC, and took place from 2 - 6 February 2014 in Cairo, Egypt for Food safety Management Systems (FSMS) and Testing.
The Team Leader and evaluator for Medical Laboratories Testing was Mr Gorkhan Birbil from TURKAK. The team consisted of: Mr Barrak Moslem (ARAC) as an evaluator for FSMS, Mr Amani Diby Esaie Romuald from Global Management Consulting-Côte d’Ivoire as a trainee evaluator for Medical Laboratories, and Mrs Lana Marashdeh Jordan Institute for Standards and Metrology (JSMO) as a trainee evaluator for Medical Laboratories.
The evaluation summary report and findings were presented to the EGAC Management team on 6 February 2014.
AFRAC’S PLANNED PRE & PEER EVALUATIONS FOR 2014
In order to maximize the opportunity to expose AFRAC’s trainee evaluators to the AFRAC Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) documentation and peer evaluation processes, the pre-peer evaluations of SADCAS, ENAO and MAURITAS shall be conducted in line with AFRAC M001-01 Policies and Procedures for an MRA among Accreditation Bodies, M002-01 AFRAC MRA and ILAC/IAF requirements.
The following peer and pre-peer evaluations are planned for 2014:
Accreditation Body: Ethiopian National Accreditation Office (ENAO)
Scope: Testing and Calibration
Type of Evaluation: Pre-peer evaluation
Dates: (dates to be confirmed)
Accreditation Body: Southern African Development Community Accreditation Service (SADCAS)
Scope: Testing and Calibration
Type of Evaluation: Pre-peer evaluation
Dates: June 2014 (dates to be confirmed)
Accreditation Body: South African National Accreditation System (SANAS)
Scope: Testing, Calibration, Certification, Inspection and Medical
Type of Evaluation: Peer evaluation
Dates: 11 – 15 August 2014
Accreditation Body: Mauritius Accreditation Service (MAURITAS)
Scope: Testing and Calibration
Type of Evaluation: Pre-peer evaluation
Dates: November 2014 (dates to be confirmed)
APLAC’s newest members are as follows:
- GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) Accreditation Center, (GAC), Gulf Region
- Accreditation of Vietnam Joint Stock Company (AoV), Vietnam
- Korea Testing Certification (KTC), Republic of Korea
APLAC now has 40 Full members and 10 Associate members. Full details of our members can be found at APLAC’s website: click here
APLAC 2013 GA Week
A very successful General Assembly and associated meetings for APLAC 2013 were held in Da Nang, Viet Nam from 1 -7 September 2013. We express our thanks to Mr Vu Xuan Thuy and his staff for their fine efforts in ensuring the week of meetings and enjoyable social events ran very smoothly.
It was pleasing to again have Ms Belinda Mort, the PAC Secretary, in attendance for the week of meetings.
(APLAC General Assembly, Da Nang, Vietman - September 2013)
The APLAC MRA Council met on 11 and 12 September and we are pleased to advise that NABCB (India) was accepted into the APLAC MRA for ISO/IEC 17020.
We are pleased to advise that the scopes of recognition of the following members were extended:
- TAF (Chinese Taipei) to include RMP;
- Perry Johnson Laboratory Accreditation, Inc. (USA) to include RMP.
Congratulations also go the following members on the continuation of their scopes of recognition in the APLAC MRA:
- NSC-ONAC (Thailand) for testing, calibration and inspection;
- PNAC (Pakistan) for testing and calibration;
- ema (Mexico) for testing, calibration, ISO 15189, and inspection;
- AIHA Laboratory Accreditation Programs, LLC (USA) for testing;
- TAF (Chinese Taipei) for testing, calibration, ISO 15189 and inspection, and
- Perry Johnson Laboratory Accreditation, Inc. (USA) for testing and calibration.
There are now 36 signatories to the APLAC MRA, including 33 for testing, 26 for calibration, 16 for inspection, 16 for ISO 15189 and 9 for RMP from 22 economies.
Full details of the scopes of recognition for each of the APLAC MRA signatories can be found on the APLAC website: click here
Elections were held for two positions on the Board of Management and we congratulate Mr Yoshinobu Uematsu of JAB, Japan, and Mr Yannapat Uthongsap of NSC-ONAC, Thailand, on their election, commencing 1 January 2014, for a two year term.
Mrs Chomchailai Sinthusarn of BLQS-DMSc, Thailand, retired from the Board of Management at the end of 2013 and we thank her for her fine efforts during her term of office.
The main issues arising from the General Assembly and other meetings were:
- elections of APLAC office bearers;
- support for the appointment of a Quality Manager;
- endorsement of funding for six proficiency testing schemes due for completion and six proficiency testing schemes due for commencement in 2014;
- endorsement of the APLAC budget for 2014;
- endorsement to conduct two training workshops in 2014.
APLAC General Assembly 2014
A Joint APLAC General Assembly/PAC Plenary will be held in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico from 21 to 27 June 2014.
As there is no mid-term 2014 meeting this will be the first Board of Management and MRA Council meeting since Da Nang, Viet Nam last September.
The next mid-term meeting will be held in early January 2015. The timing will be decided at the MRA Council meeting in Mexico.
Over the past twelve months APLAC has conducted several successful training courses and workshops.
- ISO/IEC 17020:2012 course in Hong Kong, China, hosted by HKAS, Hong Kong, China from 26 - 28 June 2013;
- ISO 15189:2012 course in Bangkok, Thailand, hosted by BLQS-DMSc, Thailand from 9 - 11 July 2013;
- Workshop on Reference Material Producer Accreditation in Tokyo, co-hosted by IAJapan and JAB from 18 - 20 November 2013.
We thank all our hosts, presenters and facilitators for their fine efforts in making these activities so successful.
Upcoming workshops and training courses are as follows:
- Workshop on medical laboratory accreditation against ISO 15189, to be held in Hong Kong, China, hosted by HKAS, from 3 - 5 September 2014;
- Workshop on the best practice of implementing ISO/IEC 17011, to be held in Singapore, hosted by SAC with a date yet to be advised;
- Evaluator training course in Ottawa, Canada from 21 - 23 July 2014;
- Lead evaluator training course in Hong Kong, China, January 2015.
APLAC and PAC continue to work together with PTB in the “Training Programme for New Members”. Phase I was held during the meetings in Da Nang last September and Phase II was conducted from 13 - 17 January in Colombo, Sri Lanka. There is no date yet for Phase III of this training.
APLAC and ILAC
The ILAC evaluation team, led by Mauricio Soares of CGCRE, Brazil, assisted by Gokhan Birbil of TURKAK, Turkey and Laurent Vinson of COFRAC, France has provided APLAC with the draft report on the evaluation. APLAC has responded to the team with details of the corrective actions and is working towards closing all the open findings. It is envisaged that the final report will be ready to be tabled at the ILAC AMC meeting to be held at IAF/ILAC 2014 in October.
The revised Memorandum of Understanding between APLAC and APMP was signed by Dr Peter Fisk and Mr Nigel Jou at the 29th APMP General Assembly held in Taipei, Chinese Taipei, November 2013.
October 2013-March 2014
1. ARAC membership in IAF
After favorable review by the IAF Executive committee and 30-day ballot to IAF members, ARAC has been accepted in September 2013 as an IAF Special Recognition Organization - Regional Accreditation Group Member.
ARAC and IAF Chairs signed the MoU in the margin of the ILAC & IAF General assembly in Seoul, Korea on 24th October 2013.
(ARAC-IAF MoU Signing Ceremony)
2. Technical Cooperation
2.1 ARAC – APLAC
In the Margin of the ILAC and IAF General Assembly in Seoul, Korea, ARAC and APLAC signed a Memorandum of Understanding MoU on 24th October 2013.
The scope of the MOU covers the relationship between ARAC and the Asia Pacific Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (APLAC) on matters of accreditation and conformity assessment policy, and sits besides the roles and responsibilities that the parties already have towards each other, arising from their memberships in ILAC. Some areas of cooperation and responsibility include training and development, Proficiency Testing programs and support on technical matters.
(ARAC- APLAC MoU Signing Ceremony)
A Memorandum of Understanding MoU between ARAC and EA (European Cooperation for Accreditation), the Regional Group of national accreditation bodies in Europe, has been signed by the two organization’s Chairs, Mr Mahmoud Eltayeb and Mr Thomas Facklam in December 2013.
The purpose of the ARAC – EA MoU is to record an understanding between ARAC and EA on their working relationship so as to achieve the scope of the MoU, which sits beside the roles and responsibilities that both parties already have towards each other, arising from their memberships in ILAC and IAF. Areas of cooperation will include training and development, peer evaluations (ARAC needs to qualify a pool of peer evaluators), information exchange, support in technical matters and adoption of common positions on issues of mutual interest.
ARAC and African Accreditation Cooperation (AFRAC) continue to work closely to identify further areas for cooperation in support of their Technical Cooperation Agreement signed in March 2013. The implementation of this started by organizing joint Peer evaluations of the two accreditation bodies TUNAC (Tunisian Accreditation Body) and EGAC (Egyptian Accreditation Body) as ARAC and AFRAC shares some common members (African Accreditation Bodies).
2.4 ARAC -TURKAK
ARAC and the Turkish Accreditation Agency (TURKAK) signed a Memorandum of Understanding MoU in December 2013. The scope of this MoU covers the relationship between ARAC and TURKAK on matters of accreditation and conformity assessment policy.
The cooperation between ARAC and TURKAK was achieved through the organization of a Regional training workshop and coaching sessions with a view to improve and share best practices and to update the skills of assessment personnel of the accreditation bodies in Arab region and improving the harmonization of the assessment of the conformity assessment bodies by the Accreditation Bodies ARAC members.
The cooperation with TURKAK is continuing through the participation of their personnel who are qualified as EA Peer evaluators in ARAC Peer evaluations. Two TURKAK personnel qualified as EA Peer Evaluators participated at the ARAC Peer Evaluations of the Tunisian and Egyptian Accreditation Bodies TUNAC & EGAC which have been conducted in December 2013 and February 2014.
3. ARAC MLA Regional workshop for ARAC MLA Committee members and ARAC Peer evaluators
ARAC organized a Regional workshop during the period 19-20 November 2013 in Tunis, Tunisia, for its MLA committee members and Peer evaluators with the aim of:
- Information and discussion about the changes in the procedures for to the IAF/ILAC A1 (Requirements and Procedures for the Evaluation of a Region) and IAF/ILAC A2 (Requirements and Procedures for the Evaluation of a Single Accreditation Body),
- Information about the results from the ILAC/IAF Joint Working Group A-series meeting and training workshop held during the 2013 ILAC/IAF annual meetings - Seoul, Korea,
- Information and discussion of the implementation of these changes at the ARAC Peer evaluations,
- Information and discussion about the ARAC Peer evaluation process documentations and requirements,
- Information and discussion about the use of the applicable ARAC forms during the Peer evaluations,
- Training on the ARAC MLA making process requirements.
ARAC has organized this workshop, in partnership with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the Arab Industrial Development and Mining Organization (AIDMO) and the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA).
(ARAC-MLA Workshop Participants)
4. Third ARAC MLA Committee meeting:
The ARAC MLA Committee held its third meeting on 21 and 22 November 2013 in Tunis, Tunisia. The meeting gathered 10 participants from the ARAC AB members.
A wide range of issues was discussed during the two-day meeting which was achieved with fruitful results especially the launch of the ARAC Peer evaluation process and the updating of ARAC MLA procedures in order to be aligned with the new requirements of the Joint IAF and ILAC documents ILAC/IAF A1 and A2.
During this meeting a training session has been provided to the ARAC MLA Committee members on the ARAC MLA decision making process.
(3rd ARAC MLA Committee meeting)
5. ARAC Peer evaluations
5.1 Peer evaluation of Tunisian Accreditation Body TUNAC :
Following TUNAC application to join ARAC MLA, the first ARAC Peer evaluation of TUNAC has been conducted during the period 16th – 20th December 2013 in Tunis, Tunisia.
The objective of this Peer evaluation is to evaluate the compliance of TUNAC to the international standard ISO/IEC 17011, and other relevant standards and related criteria such as application documents from ARAC, ILAC, and IAF for the purpose to sign the ARAC MLA covering the scope of accreditation of Testing and Calibration Laboratories according to ISO/IEC 17025, Inspection Bodies according to ISO/IEC 17020, Quality & Environmental & Food Safety Management System Certification bodies according to ISO/IEC 17021 and ISO/TS 22003.
5.2 Peer evaluation of Egyptian Accreditation Body EGAC :
Following EGAC application to join ARAC MLA, the initial ARAC Peer evaluation of EGAC has been conducted from the 2 February 2014 until 6 February 2014 in Cairo, Egypt.
This Peer Evaluation conducted, jointly with AFRAC while implementing the Technical Cooperation Agreement signed between ARAC and AFRAC in March 2013, by ARAC & AFRAC qualified Peer Evaluators and (EA) Peer Evaluator from TURKAK by applying the MoU signed between ARAC and TURKAK in December 2013.
The objective of this Peer evaluation is to evaluate the compliance of EGAC to the international standard ISO/IEC 17011, and other relevant standards and related criteria such as application documents from ARAC, ILAC, and IAF for the purpose to sign the ARAC MLA covering the scope of accreditation of Medical Testing Laboratories and accreditation of certification bodies in the field of Food Safety Management System.
(ARAC-Peer evaluation of EGAC-Opening meeting)
6. Participation of ARAC Trainee Peer Evaluator at the Re Peer evaluation TUNAC by EA:
In order to maintain its Bilateral Agreement (BLA) in the field of accreditation of testing, calibration laboratories, and accreditation of certification bodies for management systems and to extend this Agreement to the accreditation of Inspection Bodies, the Tunisian National Accreditation Council (TUNAC) has been evaluated by the European Co-operation for accreditation (EA) from 03 to 07 March 2014.
One ARAC trainee Peer evaluator participated at this Peer evaluation with the support of AIDMO-UNIDO-SIDA project with the aim to qualify a pool of ARAC Peer evaluators.
(ARAC-Peer evaluation of TUNAC-Assessment witnessing)
7. Participation of ARAC at ILAC/IAF General Assemblies and meetings in Seoul
Within the framework of its participation at the ILAC&IAF General assemblies and annual meetings held during the period 16-25 October 2013 in Seoul, Korea, ARAC has participated actively in the following committees and task force Groups meeting:
- ILAC Arrangement Management Committee (AMC),
- ILAC Executive Committee,
- Joint ILAC/IAF Executive committee,
- ILAC/IAF Peer evaluators Task Force Group,
- ILAC Arrangement Committee (ARC),
- Changes in the procedures for IAF/ILAC evaluation in IAF/ILAC A1 and A2 Training session for Peer evaluators that aims to:
- Information and discussion about the changes to IAF/ILAC A1 and A2 and the comments from the IAF/ILAC members
- Information about the results from the JWG A-series meeting held on 16 October 2013
- Discussion of the implementation of these changes at evaluations
- Conclusion for the preparation and performance of the evaluation in the regional MLA Groups.
- Joint Working Group. A-series (JWG A-Series)
- IAF Management Systems Certification (MSC) Working Group,
- The IAF Task force to prepare the IAF document on witnessing rules in the assessment of the Management System certification bodies.
8. Participation of ARAC AB members accredited laboratories at the APLAC PT Programme
Within the framework of the implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding signed between ARAC and APLAC, ARAC ensured and follow up the participation of the accredited laboratories by its Accreditation Bodies members at the APLAC Proficiency Testing (PT) Programme on "APLAC T091 Analysis of Lubricants" & "APLAC T090 Analysis of Coal ".
Four testing laboratories accredited by three ARAC AB members are participating at the APLAC T090 Analysis of Coal programme. Concerning the APLAC PT programme “T091 Analysis of Lubricants”, 13 testing laboratories accredited by 9 ARAC AB members will participate at this programme.
9. Participation of ARAC at the preparation of Solar Heating Arab Marketing and Certification Initiative “SHAMCI” system
Following the decision n° 152 dated 22th December 2011 which was taken by the Arab Ministerial Council of Electricity, raised a request to the Regional Center for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency “RECREE” and AIDMO to coordinate with the council secretariat to work on standardization and certification program for Solar Water Heaters “SWHs” aiming to achieve a quality certificate for Arab region, ARAC has actively participated in the following key activities:
- Preparation of the certification rules for SWHs, under the network formed with the name SHAMSI, which gives the requirements for SHAMSI certification for solar collectors and solar water heaters and define the test methods to be used to check if requirements are fulfilled,
- Chairing and managing the Standards Peer Group responsible for preparing the SWHs Arab standards by reviewing the ISO and EN standards and adapt them to meet the SHAMSI requirements,
- Preparation of a list of applicable standards for Certification Scheme Rules for Solar Collectors and Solar Water Heaters,
- The different SHAMCI Network Meetings,
- The lunching Workshop of the SHAMCI label which consider as the first model in the third world,
- The inspection committee responsible for the implementation of SHAMCI label certification process in terms of the role and competence criteria of inspection bodies involved in the SHAMCI label certification phases.
(ARAC-SHAMCI label launching Workshop)
10. ARAC upcoming Meetings
The upcoming ARAC meetings will be conducted in Dubai, United Arab Emirates during the period 20th-22nd May 2014 as follow:
- 20th May 2014: 7th ARAC Technical Committee meeting,
- 20th May 2014: 4th ARAC MLA Committee meeting,
- 20th May 2014: 4th ARAC Communication and Marketing Committee meeting,
- 21st May 2014: 7th ARAC Executive Committee meeting,
- 22nd May 2014: 3rd ARAC General Assembly meeting,
These meetings will be organized in partnership with the Arab Industrial Development and Mining Organization [AIDMO], the United Nations Industrial Development Organization [UNIDO] and the Swedish International Development Agency [SIDA].
11. ARAC Information and Publications
ARAC currently has implemented a Members Only section in the ARAC website with information for its members and each Committee. Further information on ARAC activities is available at www.arabarac.org (click here) or by contacting the ARAC Secretary, Mr Hasan Qasem at firstname.lastname@example.org.
IAAC activities from August 2013 to March 2014
IAAC currently has a total of 44 members, 23 of which are full members, 6 are associate members and 15 are stakeholders. IAAC welcomed ACCM of Mexico, an accredited certification body, and RELABSA of Guatemala, an association of environmental laboratories, as IAAC Stakeholder members, as of August 2013.
IAAC MLA Signatories
During its recent meeting of March 2014, the IAAC MLA Group accepted ONAC of Colombia as a signatory to the IAAC MLA for Calibration and Testing Laboratories. IAAC now has a total of 19 MLA signatory members. 19 signatories for the scope of Testing Laboratories, 14 for the scope of Calibration Laboratories, 10 for Quality Management Systems Certification Bodies, 8 for Environmental Management Systems Certification Bodies, 9 for Product Certification Bodies, and 10 for Inspection Bodies.
(ONAC of Colombia signed the IAAC MLA for the scopes of Testing and Calibration laboratories, in Mexico City, on March 17, 2014. Ileana Martinez, IAAC Chair; Francisco Piedrahita, ONAC Executive Director and Alexander Pineda, IAAC MLA Committee Chair)
IAAC Re-evaluation process by ILAC-IAF
IAAC is a Regional Cooperation Body signatory to the ILAC MRA for the scopes of Calibration and Testing Laboratories including Medical Laboratories; and Inspection Bodies. IAAC is also a signatory to the IAF MLA for the scopes of QMS, EMS, and Product Certification Bodies.
IAF and ILAC are in the process of re-evaluating IAAC to verify compliance with international requirements as a Regional Cooperation. The IAF-ILAC peer evaluation team has carried out four witnesses of IAAC peer evaluations: the IAAC evaluation of INN, Chile, in May 2013, for the scope of Testing and Calibration; the evaluation of INDECOPI-SNA, Peru, in September 2013, for the scope of Inspection; the evaluation of ONA, Paraguay, for the scope of Product; and the evaluation of OUA, Uruguay for the scopes of QMS and EMS in November 2013. The team also carried out an evaluation of the IAAC Secretariat, in November 2013 and in March 2014. The evaluation of the IAAC MLA Group was carried out in Mexico, in March 2014. IAAC is currently in the process of responding to the findings, with zero non conformities to date. IAAC expresses its appreciation to the IAF and ILAC evaluation team for their hard work and professionalism to successfully carry out this evaluation.
Extensions of the IAAC MLA
In March 2014, IAAC decided to launch the MLA for the scope of Green House Gases (GHG). Currently IAAC is operating 7 scopes of the MLA to include:
- Persons Certification Bodies according to the ISO/IEC 17024;
- Food Safety Management Systems (FSMS), according to ISO/IEC 17021, ISO 22003, and ISO 22000;
- Information Security Management Systems (ISMS), according to ISO/IEC 17021, ISO 27006 and ISO 27001;
- Medical Devices Management Systems MLA (ISO 13485);
- Proficiency Testing Providers, according to ISO/IEC 17043;
- Reference Material producers, according to ISO Guide 34; and
- Green House Gases validation/verification, according to ISO/IEC 14065
The MLA Committee assigned working groups for each MLA scope that developed and updated the necessary procedures and documentation, and is encouraging IAAC members to propose qualified peer evaluators for these new scopes.
Improvements to the IAAC MLA process:
- IAAC developed a peer evaluation report template FM 033, (based on an APLAC document), it is available on the IAAC website in the documents section.
- IAAC published document PR 025 which describes the structure of the IAAC MLA (Levels 1 through 5) and the procedure to extend the Arrangement.
- In May 2013, the IAAC General Assembly approved the MD 028 IAAC Mandatory and Non-mandatory application for the assessment and accreditation of Reference Materials Producers. MD 028 is a mandatory document for the IAAC MLA. This document was developed to ensure a consistent approach to the assessment and accreditation of Reference Material Producers (RMPs).
- In August 2013, IAAC approved the MD 038 IAAC application for the assessment and accreditation of Proficiency Testing Providers. This document has been developed to ensure a consistent approach to the assessment and accreditation of Proficiency Testing Providers (PTPs).
IAAC will hold a workshop on the development and implementation of accreditation programs for certification bodies in the fields of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy within the framework of the ISO/IEC 17065:2012 standard, to be held in April, in Argentina.
IAAC is continuously training its peer evaluator resources and last year carried out a workshop for experienced peer evaluators, in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, in August 2013. 22 peer evaluators from different countries in the region were trained in an effort to harmonize evaluation practices and update them on changes and improvements to IAAC documents and procedures.
(An IAAC peer evaluator workshop was held in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, in August 2013)
IAAC Proficiency Testing programs
IAAC T009 Proficiency Test on Energy Efficiency in Refrigerators
IAAC is organizing a regional Proficiency Testing program on Energy Efficiency in Refrigerators. The accreditation body that is coordinating this PT is ema of Mexico, and ANCE of Mexico is the proficiency testing provider. This PT receives funding from a project with PTB and the support of OAS. A preliminary workshop took place to present the PT protocol to participating laboratories. 10 laboratories from 6 countries in the region and 1 lab from Germany have signed up to participate in this PT which will begin in the first quarter of 2014.
Technical Cooperation Projects
Projects with the Physikalisch Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB)
Renewable Energies and Energy Efficiency Project
IAAC is implementing a technical cooperation project titled "Quality Infrastructure Services for Renewable Energies and Energy Efficiency (R3E) in Latin America and the Caribbean", together with the Regional Cooperations for standards and metrology: COPANT and SIM. Sponsor organizations include PTB of Germany and the Organization of American States, (OAS). The objective of this project is to strengthen the capabilities of the regional Quality Infrastructure organizations SIM, COPANT and IAAC and of their national members in providing services for the fields of energy efficiency and renewable energy sources and to promote mutual coordination in order to support the implementation of the respective national energy policies.
The activities carried out under this project include technical seminars, workshops and a proficiency testing program.
Biodiversity and Climate Change Draft Project
IAAC together with COPANT and SIM, the Regional organizations for standards and metrology, held a first planning meeting in August 2013, to define the areas of potential interest and the scope of the draft project regarding the strengthening of quality infrastructure in programs related to biodiversity and climate change. Sponsor organizations include PTB of Germany and the Organization of American States, (OAS).
Cooperation with International and Regional Organizations
Relations with IAF and ILAC
Peter Unger, ILAC Chair; and Randy Dougherty, IAF Chair, attended the IAAC General Assembly meetings held in Trinidad and Tobago, in August 2013. Peter also attended the beginning of the year meetings in Mexico, in March 2014.
(The IAAC Executive Committee meetings were held in Mexico City, Mexico, from March 17-21, 2014)
Cooperation with APLAC and PAC
- Belinda Mort, PAC Secretary; and Martha Mejía, APLAC representative, regularly attend the IAAC General Assembly meetings, the last one held in Trinidad and Tobago in August 2013.
- IAAC and APLAC carried out two joint peer evaluations in 2013 and one in 2014. IAAC and PAC carried out 1 joint peer evaluation in 2014.
- IAAC and APLAC invited members to participate in each other's proficiency testing programs.
- IAAC, PAC and APLAC published a joint newsletter in September 2013.
Cooperation with EA
Ileana Martinez, IAAC Chair, regularly attends EA General Assemblies. Thomas Facklam, EA Chair, attended the IAAC General Assembly in August 2013.
Cooperation with the African Accreditation Cooperation, (AFRAC) and SADCA
- IAAC regularly invites AFRAC and SADCA members to participate in its proficiency testing programs.
- AFRAC and IAAC are currently in the process of finalizing a Memorandum of Understanding between both Cooperations in order to strengthen ties.
Cooperation with the Arab Accreditation Cooperation, (ARAC):
IAAC regularly exchanges information with ARAC regarding best practices in accreditation.
Next IAAC meetings
The upcoming IAAC General Assembly meetings will be held from August 22-29, 2014, in Guatemala City, Guatemala, and will be hosted by the Oficina Guatemalteca de acreditación(OGA).
BIPM - World Metrology Day
Measurements and the global energy challenge
We are pleased to announce that the 2014 World Metrology Day Web Site is now live: (click here)
The theme this year is "Measurements and the global energy challenge".
Last year's World Metrology Day was a huge success; we hope to build on that success in 2014.
On the web site, you may also download Press Release and the Directors' Messages and poster.
The poster can be downloaded as PDF and InDesign files in English and French (and may be translated into other languages). Subject to the conditions listed on the website, organizations may replace the KRISS logo (KRISS undertook the poster design for 2014 in conjunction with the BIPM and BIML team) with their own.
Please help us to spread the word about World Metrology Day (20 May 2014) and let to World Metrology Day Team email@example.com know about the events you are organizing in your Country so that we can include them on the web site.
Don't hesitate to contact us should you have any questions or need help in downloading the posters.
Like in the previous years, the work of the ISO committee on conformity assessment (CASCO) was intensive in 2013. Five international standards and technical specifications were published, including 2 new parts to ISO/IEC 17021 (requirements for certification bodies doing audit of management systems) on competence requirements for auditors in event sustainability and quality managements systems. The revision of ISO TS 22003 on certification requirements for food safety management systems has also been completed after two years of intense work. In this document too, the main drive has been the introduction of a full competence approach for the definition of auditor requirements and leaving out the defined levels of qualifications, training and experiences. In 2014, this will continue with 2 new parts to ISO/IEC 17021 in development on business continuity and road safety management systems.
Regarding more specifically accreditation, in 2013, ISO/IEC 17011 (requirements for accreditation bodies accrediting conformity assessment bodies) went through the systematic review and the members voted in majority to keep the document unchanged. However, considering it is a ten year old standard, a task group has been set up to make an analysis and put a recommendation forward to the ISO/CASCO Chairman Policy and Coordination group (CPC). At its next meeting in April, the CPC will discuss the recommendation and decide whether to draft a resolution to start a revision or to confirm the systemic review ballot results.
On the promotional side, ISO/CASCO is developing an interactive on-line tool to support a harmonized approach to conformity assessment among national regulators. Built around the CASCO toolbox (full set of standards), it is intended for use by ISO national member bodies together with national regulators. Two regional workshops on conformity assessment and regulation are planned later this year in Oman and Botswana.
WADA - Renewal of MoU between ILAC and WADA
Ten years of successful cooperation between the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC) and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) was reconfirmed at the IV World Conference on Doping in Sport held on 12-15 November 2013 in Johannesburg, South Africa by renewing the MoU.
(Signing of MoU between ILAC and WADA, left to right: WADA Chairman Hon. John Fahey AC and ILAC Chairman Peter Unger)
The ILAC-WADA cooperation was formally recognized by signing the first MoU between the two international organizations in November 2007 during the 3rd World Conference on Doping in Sport held in Madrid (Spain) and further reconfirmed in October 2010 during the ILAC General Assembly organized in Shanghai (China).
The ILAC-WADA cooperation has a positive impact on the community of sports anti-doping laboratories in achieving a high quality of analysis, it certainly adds to the credibility of the WADA laboratory accreditation process in ensuring the delivery of accurate and reliable results worldwide.
The renewal of the ILAC-WADA MoU is the expression of mutual interests of both organizations and provides a sound framework for the tangible results in the global fight against doping in sport. Under this MoU, 51 assessors from national accreditation bodies in 28 economies around the world have been trained by WADA in the ISL to conduct assessments of the WADA accredited laboratories. Also as part of this MoU a joint Working Group (known as the ILAC/WADA Liaison Group) meets at least once a year to ensure coordination and harmonization of tasks related to accreditation of anti-doping laboratories.
(From left to right: WADA Director General David Howman, ILAC Chairman Peter Unger and WADA Chairman Hon. John Fahey AC following the signing ceremony)
SWEDAC Informs India About Energy Efficiency
Swedish Board for Accreditation and Conformity Assessment (SWEDAC)
Swedac participated at a conference in India to inform about energy efficiency together with the Swedish Energy Agency and SP (Technical Institute of Sweden). Swedac was represented by Elisabeth Leu. A delegation from the Swedish Energy Agency, SP and Swedac visited Hyderabad in India to participate in the conference “Energy Efficiency Summit”. The conference was held during four days and gathered more than 500 Indian companies to discuss energy efficiency in industry.
During the third day of the conference a Swedish-Indian session took place, in which the Swedish representatives presented their experiences from certifying energy management systems. The Swedish delegation consisted of representatives from the Swedish Energy Agency, SP and Swedac, as well as Höganäs and SCA, two companies that presented their experiences from energy efficiency work and energy management systems. Swedac was represented by Elisabeth Leu.
- The purpose of energy management systems is to decrease energy consumption on a global level as well as for companies.
- In Sweden the Swedish Energy Agency runs a program for increased energy efficiency for heavy industry. Taking part in this program will give taxes reduction, but then a certified energy management system is demanded.
- The trip to India gave us the opportunity to exchange experiences between the two countries, Elisabeth says.
(The purpose of energy management systems is to save energy. Photo: Mikael Ljungström)
Swedac leads a multimillion project in the Agadir region sponsored by Sida
Sida (Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency) has decided to give Swedac the mission to lead a four-year long technical assistance project in the Agadir region. The aim is to enhance the free trade within the region and globally. Sida has missioned Swedac, the Swedish Board for Accreditation and Conformity Assessment, to lead a four year long project in the countries which have signed the Agadir Agreement: Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco.
"The development in the Agadir region is important for free trade in the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region and globally, says Merih Malmqvist Nilsson, deputy Director General. For Swedac this is the most comprehensive project ever that we shall be leading and we are proud to have deserved the confidence of Sida."
The Agadir-agreement is a declaration of intent to create a free trade zone between the four countries Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco. The agreement also aims to increase the four countries’ trade with EU and the rest of the world. The project’s paramount target is to create prerequisites for this by strengthening the quality infrastructure in the countries thus creating the systems and structures for free trade and thereby eliminating technical barriers to trade. The concept Quality Infrastructure refers to the legal framework, institutions and activities that must exist in a society to create conditions for safe products and services, e.g. accreditation, certification and market surveillance.
The activities of the project encompass all of Swedac’s activity areas such as legislation concerning conformity assessment, harmonisation of technical regulations, accreditation and market surveillance. It will be the most outstanding project that Swedac leads by itself, with a budget of 52 million SEK over the four year period.
Over the past 20 years Swedac has been deeply involved in international development cooperation within the area of quality infrastructure for free trade. Swedac has participated in a total of 51 technical assistance projects and thus supported capacity building in the participating countries.
Swedac has a wide range of international training activities within its areas of competence. Swedac has also managed ITP-programs for Sida in the area of quality infrastructure for free trade and quality infrastructure for food safety training a total of 1606 experts from 95 economies. The ITP-programs are performed in cooperation with the National Board of Trade, the National Food Agency and freelance consultants.
(Merih Malmqvist Nilsson, Deputy Director General, Swedac and Peter Strömbäck, Director General, Swedac. Photo: Maria Oldegård)
KAN Accreditation to Support Energy Management
National Accreditation Body of Indonesia (KAN)
Industrial development has had an important role in the economic growth of Indonesia. This sector consumes the largest portion of energy, e.g. in 2011 it was about 37.7%, followed by transportation 33.3% and household 10.2% of 836 barrel of oil equivalent in total. On the other hand, the energy supply mostly (about 95% in the same year) comes from fossil fuel sources, including oil, natural gas and coal, thus producing significant greenhouse gases. This environmental issue as well as energy shortages and rising energy costs have posed a major challenge facing the people in the country. In response, while keeping economic development, Indonesia has enforced energy conservation policies since 1982 in form of law, government regulation, presidential decree, presidential instruction, and ministerial regulation.
(A visit by KAN Chairman to a testing Laboratory for natural gases - 1 April 2013)
In the voluntary area, appreciated efforts have been made by some companies who have implemented standard ISO 50001 Energy Management System and obtained certification from a reputable certification body. To date, however, there has not been yet accreditation provided by the National Accreditation Body of Indonesia (KAN) to such a conformity assessment body. KAN has planned to commence operating this new accreditation scheme within next two years. Nevertheless, KAN has accredited laboratories related to energy since the time of its establishment in 1997, and inspection bodies later on. There are at present 98 KAN-accredited testing laboratories that support energy management or, in general, activities in energy dealing with coal, oil, carbon, etc. Likewise, 120 laboratories having capability in calibration of equipment used in energy measurement such as pressure gauge, flow meter, and electrical measuring instruments have been accredited. Furthermore, 10 out of 36 accredited inspection bodies have a scope of activities in the energy-related field covering transportation and power plant. The number of such laboratories and inspection bodies will expectedly increase in line with wider implementation of ISO 50001 in the future.
The Importance of Energy Accreditation - KENAS
Kenya Accreditation Service (KENAS)
In the global economic sphere, energy is considered as one of the key driver of economic growth and development. More so in Kenya, the number of businesses and residents dependent on energy have doubled since the year 2007. As the energy demand grows, calls for more methods for harnessing, storing and sharing energy have been encouraged. Nonetheless, this has not shifted the attention from the need to ensure that all Kenyans have access to energy that is clean, and environmentally sustainable. This calls for accreditation of laboratories, inspection bodies and certification bodies to drive improvements and efficiency in the energy sector.
Significant opportunities exist for improving energy in all sectors of the Kenyan Economy with savings of up to 25 per cent being seen as possible and this would contribute positively to the environment hence negating the impacts of climate change that are envisaged. As one measure of mitigation and adaptation to climate change, the Government of Kenya has been spearheading promotion of development and use of alternative sources of energy by developing the National Climate change Response Strategy of 2010. Kenya is implementing an energy mix that greatly emphasizes carbon–neutral energy sources such as geothermal, wind, solar and renewable biomass. In addition, the country’s building codes are being reviewed to incorporate measures that will encourage climate–proofing and the construction of energy–efficient buildings, hence bringing in a requirement for credible conformity assessment activities.
Additionally, the Kenya Vision 2030 is a long-term development strategy, which aims to create a globally competitive and prosperous economy with a high quality of life. It envisages that Kenya will be transformed into a newly-industrializing, middle-income country providing high quality life to all Kenyans in a clean and secure environment. Simultaneously, the strategy aspires to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) for Kenya by 2015. Infrastructure, including energy, is identified as one of the enablers of the envisaged socio-economic transformation of the economy with a vision to provide cost-effective, world class infrastructure facilities and services.
In keeping with the MDGs, Kenya is committed to reducing by half the number of people who lack access to modern energy services by 2015 and reducing by half the number of people living in poverty. Access to affordable energy is an essential prerequisite to achieving economic growth and poverty reduction in Kenya. The majority of people who rely on biomass for thermal energy and who lack access to electricity are in rural areas; specifically, those who cook with biomass or charcoal are almost universally women. The lack of access to affordable energy services -“energy poverty”- disproportionately affects women and girls due to their traditional roles, household responsibilities, and low socio-political status. The Government is expanding the access of electricity in rural areas through the rural electrification program covering both grid extension and off-grid systems.
As the National accreditation Body in Kenya, KENAS works with the other government institutions towards realizing the Kenya Vision 2030 as well as the MDGs through accreditation of conformity assessment bodies that support the energy sector. For instance under the calibration scheme we have accredited the Kenya Power calibration Laboratory. This is a landmark in provision of accreditation service and consumer protection considering Kenya Power’s strategic position as the only distributor of power in Kenya. Therefore KENAS supports this year’s World Accreditation Day theme ‘Accreditation: Delivering confidence in the provision of energy’.
Development of Accreditation in the Gulf Region
GCC Accreditation Centre (GAC) Update
Organisation of the regional GCC conference on Accreditation and Laboratory Proficiency
The GCC Accreditation Centre (GAC) and GCC Standardization Organisation (GSO) of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) jointly organized the 2nd GCC conference on Laboratory Proficiency that brings together all parties interested in Accreditation, laboratory activities and Market regulations in the member countries.
The conference was an opportunity to meet with the laboratories working in the GCC member countries and investigate their needs and thus determine the priorities that Member States need to establish for the future actions.
GAC intends through this yearly conference to help the development of proficiency testing activities in the member countries and encourage laboratories and inspection bodies to participate in PT programs at the regional and international level.
More than 200 representatives from public and private laboratories and from other interested bodies were present and discussions covered needs for proficiency testing, accreditation effect on economy and role of laboratories and associations of laboratories in market surveillance.
The conference was held under the patronage of His Excellency Dr Rashid Bin Fahd, UAE Minister of Environment and Water, member of GAC board, Mr WONG Wang-wah represented APLAC and Mrs Merih Malmqvist represented ILAC in the opening ceremony.
(Mr Wong Wang-wah and Mrs Merih Malmqvist represented APLAC and ILAC respectively in the opening ceremony of the conference)
GAC organizes a special training program and a regional workshop on Proficiency testing
GAC organized a special training program and a workshop on the requirements of the international standard ISO/IEC 17043 for participants from the member countries, the training was conducted by Mr Daniel Tholen and Mr Brahim Houla, and the participants were representatives of national authorities and from laboratories in the GCC region.
During the workshop BIPEA presented and discussed the results of a PT program on “Drinking water" that was conducted in the member countries, Alborg Labs presented the results of the Medical testing PT program that is conducted in Saudi Arabia and will be enlarged to cover the GAC member countries.
The training was also an opportunity to give an overview about the new developments of the new ISO 13528 standard and to discuss the PT programs being developed in member countries by the a regional GCC committee in the fields of Medical Testing and in the field of Carnes Inspection.
GAC organizes 5 free trainings on accreditation requirements
In line with GAC’s strategy to develop accreditation competencies in member countries, 5 Assessor trainings were conducted according to the GAC requirements in the fields of:
- Accreditation of testing and calibration laboratories ISO/IEC 17025,
- Accreditation of product certification bodies ISO/IEC 17065,
- Accreditation of Inspection bodies ISO/IEC 17020,
- Accreditation of Management system certification bodies ISO/IEC 17021, and
- Assessment techniques and GAC assessor skills ISO 19011.
The training courses were open for trainees from the 7 member countries, and participants were very satisfied of the level of the trainings and expressed their willingness to operate as assessors for the GCC Accreditation Center in the member countries.
GCC Accreditation Center (GAC) builds up its pool of competent assessors through providing 5 free trainings to different accreditation standards
A special interactive data base was established to allow assessors to update their information online and to get the latest information about the fields they are qualified to assess and the deadlines for updating and maintaining their qualification.
Creation of the GCC Laboratories cooperation GULFLAB
As a result of the discussions of laboratories working in the GCC countries during the first Regional conference, a group of private and governmental laboratories agreed to create a cooperation of laboratories that will be representing the interests of laboratories and helping establish an effective network that discusses issues related to their work in the member countries and enhance communication with regulators accreditation bodies and clients.
GAC (GCC Accreditation Center) and the GSO (GCC Standardization Organization) contributed effectively in joining the efforts of these laboratories and encourage their work to establish this very important cooperation for Laboratories in the member countries.
GAC cross frontier cooperation with accreditation bodies from exporting economies to GCC region (TURKAK, TUNAC, UKAS, SLAB, HKAS, DSM, KAN and PAO)
As the GAC main goal is to give confidence in the conformity assessment activities in the member countries and facilitate trade between and with the member countries, GAC is cooperating closely with the accreditation bodies operating in the region, and participates in the accreditation assessments conducted by foreign accreditation bodies like the assessments conducted by UKAS and SLAB in the GCC region.
As the regulatory authorities recognize the GAC accreditation for certification related to the regional regulations of products, GAC receives many accreditation requests from CABs outside the GCC region. In order to be in line with the ILAC cross frontier policies, GAC visited accreditation bodies operating in the economies concerned by the exported products to GCC region, exchange of visits were conducted in the Year 2014 with the following economies to Turkey (TURKAK), France (COFRAC), United Kingdom (UKAS), Philippines (PAO), Malaysia (DSM) and Hong Kong ( HKAS).
GAC signed Contracts of cooperation with TURKAK (Turkey), TUNAC (Tunisia) and UKAS (UK) that cover cross frontier accreditation and also accreditations for the purpose of notification by the member countries for GCC Products regulations.
GAC Visit to TURKAK GAC Visit to HKAS
Contract of cooperation signed with TURKAK Contract of cooperation signed with UKAS
GAC grants first accreditations in the frame of the GCC Toys Regulations and to Private laboratories in the member countries
GAC granted the first accreditation in the frame of the notification process of the GCC coutries legal frame work for the Toys Directive, the accreditation was granted to the Conformity Department in the United Arab Emirates standardization Organization ESMA.
GAC also granted the first accreditations to private laboratories in the field of Electrical products testing and Textile Products testing working mainly with customs for clearance of imported products. The new directive on Low Voltage (LVD) Products is in its final approval phases and will be soon applied for the products imported to the GCC single Market.
Accreditation to Conformity department in ESMA
Accreditation to Bureau VERITAS Saudi Arabia Testing Services
Accreditation in Albania Is Moving Forward
Directorate of Accreditation (DA) Accreditation Activities in Albania
DA pointed positive index on number of accreditations and applications.
Accreditation in Albania is moving forward, step by step in the right direction. The year 2013 has been very positive for the activities regarding accreditation.
15 accreditations have been granted by the Directorate of Accreditation; nine for inspection body, one for certification body and the others for testing laboratories. In total the number of accredited conformity assessment bodies is 33 from which 19 testing laboratories, 2 certification body and 12 inspection bodies. Actually in Albania the fields with the largest number of accredited continue to remain the testing laboratories especially in construction area. Meanwhile the application and accreditation of inspection bodies from 2011 continues to increased, fields with the largest number of accredited inspection bodies are pressure vessels.
DA is also encouraging the medical testing laboratories to seek accreditation and in this context an application by a hospital was submitted in January 2014 .
Previously, the DA formed a technical committee for medical laboratories with the task of developing documentation for accreditation of medical laboratory according to the ISO 15189.
Our internal and external assessors, of technical and management system increased in progressive way the level and technique of assessment. This thing was present in the level of findings during the assessment of Conformity Assessment Bodies and therefore in level in self request of one laboratory or inspection body for achieving the requirements of respective standard.
Transparency in work is an DA characteristic, and all the relevant accreditation-related information can be found at DA web portal: click here.
DA holds a successful event for all accredited organizations
The General Directorate of Accreditation (DA) hosted on 25 February 2014 a round-table for laboratories, inspection and certification bodies. The event took place at the premises of the Ministry of Economic Development Trade and Entrepreneurship in Tirana and the opening speech was made by Mr.Armond Halebi, General Director of the DA.
The aim of this activity was to provide a platform for delegates to exchange experiences on problems in the work of accredited bodies and involve all interested parties in creating the system of accreditation in the Albania that tends to meet the requirements of all users.
In his opening remarks and presentation, Mr.Halebi explained DA objectives and introduced its plan to develop some of the activities in order to promote the accreditation. As we know, the accreditation is one of the most effective ways for various organizations to regularly and consistently examine and improve the quality of their work and service CABs and other interested parties by promoting the importance and role of accreditation in conformity.
Also included in this discussion was the selection of CAB’s representative on the Advisory Board of DA, the new documentation (standards, guides) published by ILAC/IAF, EA, and reflected also in the DA documentation.
The event was also highly appreciated by the participating parties as a successful experience sharing opportunity, which opened the door to closer cooperation between DA and CAB’s.
All parties in attendance agreed to continue with this form of experience sharing in the future, taking into consideration the results from this activity.
The DA round up in training for Proficiency Testing the testing laboratories and technical expert
The General Directorate of Accreditation has organized in December 2013 the training courses for Proficiency Testing (PT) for testing laboratories that would like to assess their performance. The goal of training programmes is to demonstrate that participating to proficiency tests Proficiency Testing leads to improved quality of analytical results. The results from Proficiency Testing are of crucial interest for laboratories as these provide clear information of its testing capabilities. 25 people from various laboratories technical expert and DA staff participated in the training organized by General Directorate of Accreditation.
During 2013 were developed and operated 13 Proficiency testing activities, 5 of them were organised by DA and 8 Proficiency Testing schemes were organized in framework of European Project. About 30 laboratories accredited and non-accredited have participated in the 5 Proficiency Tests organized by DA. The presentation of the results of these proficiency testing was the goal of this training.
The General Directorate of Accreditation in order to assist the laboratories publishes on its website continuous information on Proficiency Testing and Inter-laboratory Comparisons provided by European and international bodies.
PCA Poland Sampling Seminar
News from Polish Centre for Accreditation (PCA)
More than 350 participants attended the seminar on sampling organized by Polish Centre for Accreditation on the first day of 16th International Trade Fair of Analytical, Measurement and Control Technology (Warsaw, 12-14 March 2014).
"The matter that we are going to present today has been intensively discussed for a long time, both within the European Union and at the forums provided by worldwide organizations associating national accreditation bodies: ILAC and IAF” – said Lucyna Olborska, Deputy Director of Polish Centre for Accreditation, in her address opening the seminar entitled: “Sampling in the activity of the accredited conformity assessment bodies”.
The seminar was made up of six presentations delivered by Lucyna Olborska and PCA experts from Testing Laboratories Accreditation Department and Certification and Inspection Bodies Accreditation Department.
The first presentation "The object of conformity assessment versus sample of assessment’s object” concerned the importance and role of sampling in all areas of conformity assessment activities of testing laboratories, inspection bodies and certification bodies. It was stressed that the representative samples ought to be taken of the whole batch of products or materials that are subject to testing; only then would the test results be reliable enough for use in conformity assessment of products. Without such representative sampling, it would not be possible to use the results to assess the whole batch.
In the second presentation, titled "The process of sampling – its plans, procedures, quality assurance and documentation”, special emphasis was put on faults in sampling that could undermine the analyst’s effort and incur additional costs. The results of the analysis might then only be applicable to the sample itself and not the whole object of the assessment. Failure to understand this could often lead to making wrong decisions.
The third presentation concerned two topics: "Sampling versus handling of test items” and “Documenting of test results, including sampling”.
The fourth presentation was titled "Selected issues related to sampling in the inspection activity”.
In the next presentation, “Accreditation of sampling activity”, the issue of lack of international accreditation requirements for sampling as a stand-alone activity was brought up. In this area it is the accreditation body that can develop its own solution.
"Sampling in the certification activity” was the final presentation which was provided by Lucyna Olborska, who concentrated on sampling in the activity of the accredited certification bodies in two areas: organic farming and integrated plant production.
After the seminar, at PCA stand, many participants took the opportunity to discuss with speakers all matters of particular interest. The stand was very popular among the visitors throughout the whole Fair which was due to the availability of PCA experts providing the requested information.
News from DAC Dubai
Dubai Accreditation Department (DAC)
Dubai Accreditation Department hosted the 3rd meetings of Halal Accreditation Committee of SMIIC
Dubai Accreditation Department (DAC) hosted the 3rd meetings of Halal Accreditation Committee of The Standards and Metrology Institute for Islamic Countries (SMIIC). The meetings were held on 15 to 17 November 2013 in Dubai. Delegates from Turkey, UAE, Iran Bosnia & Herzegovina and SMIIC secretariat attended the meeting. Ms. Amina Ahmed Mohammed director of DAC welcomed the delegates. The scope of the Accreditation Committee (AC) is to establish Halal accreditation scheme among member states of Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). During meetings the Accreditation committee discussed the progress regarding establishing halal accreditation system. Five working groups for documentation, human resources, test methods for certification, peer evaluation and cooperation were established. Meetings of working groups for documentation and human resources were also held. Mr. Salih Yuksal chair of committee thanked Dubai Accreditation Department for hosting the committee meetings in Dubai.
(SMIIC meetings in Dubai)
DAC arranged symposium on Halal accreditation
During the 7th Dubai Food Safety Conference, DAC arranged a symposium on halal accreditation and certification systems. Engineer Salem Bin Mohammad Mesmar assistant director general of Dubai Municipality delivered the opening speech by focusing on Dubai government’s vision regarding placing Dubai as a capital of Islamic economy. Ms. Amina Ahmed director of DAC gave presentation on DAC’s upcoming halal accreditation scheme. Mr. Saleh Yuksal representative of Standards and Metrology Institute for Islamic Countries (SMIIC) gave presentation on unifying halal standards among Islamic countries. Dr Tony Wigg, Australian Department of Agriculture and forestry gave presentation on Australian Government Authorised Halal Program (AGAHP). Large number of representatives of food manufacturers and conformity assessment bodies attended the symposium.
TSE delegation visited Dubai Accreditation Department
Delegation from Turkish Standards Institution (TSE) visited Dubai Accreditation Department on 5th March 2014. The delegation was lead by the President of TSE
Mr. Hulusi Senturk. Various areas of mutual interests were discussed. Ms. Amina Ahmed director of DAC briefed the visiting delegation about upcoming accreditation schemes of DAC. She informed that in line with vision of Dubai Government, DAC is going to launch accreditation scheme for certification bodies providing halal certifications.
(Ms. Amina Ahmed director of DAC presenting memorial shield to visiting Mr. Hulusi Senturk president of TSE)
(Group photo with visiting delegates from Turkish Standards Institution -TSE)
DAC arranged open house meetings for medical laboratories and inspection bodies
DAC arranged separate open house meetings for medical laboratories and inspection bodies. Large number of representatives of medical laboratories and inspection bodies attended the meetings. In both meetings, DAC representatives gave presentations about new versions of relevant ISO standards. Respective DAC technical task force members responded the various technical queries of delegates. Open discussions during open house meetings covered various quality and technical issues.
(Engr. Yousef Ahmed Al Jassmi principal accreditation engineer –Inspection Bodies Accreditation Section is receiving appreciation certificate from Ms. Amina Ahmed director of DAC)
DAC conducted various training courses for conformity assessment bodies
DAC conducted various training courses for conformity assessment bodies on various accreditation related subjects including awareness training on new version of ISO/IEC 17020, ISO 15189 and ISO 17024 standards. Trainings on methods validation and uncertainty measurements have also been included in DAC training program for laboratories.
DAC arranged 3rd brainstorming session
DAC arranged 3rd annual brainstorming session for DAC staff in local hotel in Dubai. DAC staff presented various ideas on operations of DAC and related conformity assessment issues. DAC uses various formal means to gather feedback from DAC staff including electronic suggestion system and annual brainstorming sessions. During the session appreciation certificates were also awarded to best performing sections of DAC who achieved the annual targets & key performance indicators.
(Ms. Amina Ahmed director of DAC addressing the DAC annual brainstorming session)
Better Accreditation Facility Needed to Boost Export - BAB
News from Bangladesh Accreditation Body (BAB)
Industries Minister Amir Hossain Amu stressed the need for maintaining the quality of the country's export products in the international market and government is taking the issue seriously and trying to facilitate trade. He said that the industries ministry is helping to get the Bangladesh Accreditation Board (BAB) more global foothold by having the Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) membership of International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation.
The Minister said this while addressing a seminar on 'Role of Accreditation in Export Promotion' at the Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) auditorium in Dhaka on 16th February 2014.
This Seminar was jointly organized by the Ministry of Industries (MoI), BAB, DCCI and Business Initiative Leading Development (BUILD).
(Industries Minister Amir Hossain Amu, Board member of BAB Md Liaquat Ali, BAB Director General Md. Abu Abdullah, DCCI President Mohammad Shahjahan Khan and Business Initiative Leading Development Chairman Asif Ibrahim are showing BAB Published Accreditation Handbook at the DCCI auditorium.)
Additional Secretary of Ministry of Industries Md Farhad Uddin was present as the special guest with DCCI President Mohammad Shahjahan Khan chaired the seminar.
The DCCI President stressed the need for creating acceptability of the country's exportable products and services in the international arena through accreditation. He said that quality issue is the growing concern of the global businesses and accreditation is the single most important tool in this connection. He also added that the laboratory testing units of international standard could be established through Private Public Partnership (PPP) initiative and it is important to strengthen BAB and make it more effective. He informed that for meeting the World Trade Organisation (WTO) requirements BAB is the only authority for issuing accreditation to testing and calibration laboratory and local businessman can take accreditation certificates of international standard from BAB at a lower cost.
Chairman of BUILD and former DCCI President Asif Ibrahim opine that through private sector lab outsourcing BSTI (Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution) can reduce their workload. He said that testing laboratories were very important for the export business and private initiative was needed to boost the area.
Director General, BAB, Md Abu Abdullah said BAB has accredited 11 national and multinational testing and Calibration laboratories as per ISO/IEC 17025. He also informed that BAB will apply for MRA by April this year and expressed hope that by the end of this year BAB will get the MRA.
Board Member of BAB M Liaquat Ali presented the keynote paper at the seminar. He highlighted diversification of products and markets to increase exports. He added that some challenges needed to be met for the effectiveness of the deal including improving physical infrastructure, coordinated policies and power supply.
Trade officials and business leaders said that signing of multilateral recognition agreement with different international bodies would ease non-tariff export barriers as the absence of the facility are causing financial and procedural troubles for the Bangladesh businesses.
Research by CNAS China
CNAS’ research on accreditation of pressure vessel failure analysis inspection bodies
CNAS has conducted a series of research on the accreditation of failure analysis bodies. CNAS is going to issue Guidance on Accreditation of Pressure Vessel Failure Analysis Bodies and Guidance on the Application of Inspection Body Competence Accreditation Criteria in the Field of Pressure Vessel Failure Analysis.
Failure analysis is a comprehensive analysis of the properties of metallic materials. For the metallic material inspection bodies, failure analysis is the best way to demonstrate the capability of the inspection bodies. Consequently, the accreditation demand of failure analysis inspection bodies is growing,
In order to perform appropriate accreditation assessment of failure analysis bodies for determining their ability, CNAS has arranged a research project on the accreditation of pressure vessel failure analysis. Participants of this research project are technical assessors and experts in the field of failure analysis. Based on the study of some typical examples of failure analysis bodies, the project has analyzed the failure analysis process, and quality control in the process, and the testing competence which affects failure analysis detection capabilities. Competence demonstration of the personnel evaluating comprehensive analysis has also been researched. Outcome of this project includes Guidance on Accreditation of Pressure Vessel Failure Analysis Bodies, Guidance on the Application of Inspection Body Competence Accreditation Criteria in the Field of Pressure Vessel Failure Analysis, and Work Instruction for internal use.
These assessment documents stipulate that applicant shall meet the requirements on operation performance, personnel qualifications and comprehensive technical requirements before the accreditation application is accepted. The comprehensive support of testing conditions to failure analysis, requirements on the experience and competence of key staff and personnel evaluating analysis has also been specified.
Currently, CNAS has just completed the requirements for the assessment process in the field of pressure vessel failure analysis and accredited three relevant inspection bodies. There are some bodies now in the process of preparing for accreditation application. In order to meet the growing demand for accreditation, CNAS will extend inspection accreditation scope to mechanical components etc. by conducting a series of research.
IA Japan “Economic Benefit of Accreditation” Seminar
held at METI
On February 10th, 2014, Mr. Jon Murthy, Marketing Communication Manager at UKAS and Chair of ILAC Marketing and Communications Committee (MCC) & IAF Communications Marketing Committee (CMC) spoke in Tokyo for the seminar titled “Economic Benefit of Accreditation” hosted by Japan Accreditation Council (JAC) at the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI).
With a keen interest in learning more about the economic roles and impact of accreditation in the UK, the seminar was attended by over 50 attendees representing regulators and accreditation bodies such as METI, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF), Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW), Food and Agricultural Materials Inspection Center (FAMIC), IAJapan, JAB, JIPDEC and VLAC.
As JAC Secretary, Mr. Ichiro Fujima, Chief Executive, IAJapan introduced and appreciated Mr. Murthy for his effort to extend his stay and travel to Tokyo from Kyoto where the ILAC MCC / IAF CMC meetings were held.
(Mr. Ichiro Fujima, Chief Executive, IAJapan gave an opening remark at the seminar)
Mr. Murthy introduced his organisation, UKAS as well as background information on what drives accreditation in UK before discussing the “Economic Benefit of Accreditation” based on The Economics of Accreditation Report* which gained attention among attendees as they continue to find more ways to engage and support government and regulators.
(Mr. Jon Murthy, Marketing Communication Manager, UKAS and Chair of ILAC MCC & IAF CMC spoke at the seminar)
Major drivers of accreditation for business in UK, as explained by Mr. Murthy, are removing technical barriers to trade, supporting competition/productivity and reducing insurance cost while accreditation drives better regulation, reducing government expenditure / duplication and maintaining independence for government and regulators. Mr. Murthy then summarised the structure of the research, data sources and findings of The Economics of Accreditation Report and how each accreditation service adds up to a total estimated value of accreditation at more than £600m a year.
Reflective questions were raised by attendees regarding the Report as well as ongoing development of new services by UKAS. The seminar provided a valuable opportunity to learn and explore application of the roles and impact of accreditation to local market and discuss how UKAS develops new services.
*The Economics of Accreditation Report: This is a research report published in March 2013 as the first extensive study on the economic roles and impact of accreditation in the UK commissioned by the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) and partly funded by the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) led by researchers at Birbeck, University of London.
Full details can be found in The Economics of Accreditation Report (click here).
A summary of the main findings can be found in a Summary Report (click here).
Expansion and Strengthening of OAA Argentina
News from Argentina Accreditation Organisation (OAA)
In 2013, the OAA has extended its scope of recognition in the Inter-American Accreditation Cooperation (IAAC) and ILAC. Since last August, it is signatory to the IAAC MLA for the scope of Inspection Bodies and subsequently obtained the corresponding ILAC MRA recognition.
OAA participated actively in the translation of ISO 15189: 2012. Translation is already completed and the corresponding administrative steps for its release have been started.
Moreover, the OAA has launched the accreditation program of Reference Materials Producers and has a technical committee made by some producers of different types of reference materials (dairy products, soil, strains, etc).
The OAA is working on preparations for the next accreditation day, making focus on the theme chosen by ILAC and IAF "the role accreditation plays in providing confidence in the provision of energy." Regarding this, it will be topic of interest to present nationally what was observed since the nationalization of the oil company, YPF (Yacimientos Petrolíferos Fiscales). Under the Law No. 26.741 was declared of National Public Interest achieving self-sufficiency in Hydrocarbons. This has increased exploration activity in the country and has also grown interest in extending the scope of accreditation of some of its accredited laboratories, extending both new sites and the number of accredited tests.
On the other hand, continuing with issues linked to energy: it is important to note that three Argentinian laboratories are participating in an intercomparison on energy efficiency organized by PTB- IAAC within the framework of the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy involving: SIM (Inter -American System of Metrology), COPANT (Pan-American Standards Commission), IAAC, PTB and OAS (Organization of American States).
Moreover, another important function of the OAA is to be the National Authority for Monitoring Compliance with Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) – Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) for non clinical studies in Pesticides, Biocides and Industrial Chemicals. In May 2013, by the Resolution No. 33/2013 SENASA (National Service of Food Safety and Quality) it was established the deadline for implementation of GLP Principles for non clinical studies performed to determine the identity and magnitude of pesticide residues in field phase. SENASA has delegated the corresponding monitoring to the OAA. The need for training in the OECD GLP Principles is growing in the country, this prompted that during 2013, and the OAA increased the training program on this subject, which already includes the completion of an annual course. Therefore, three additional courses were run in universities and organizations of different locations in the country (Buenos Aires City, provinces of Santa Fe and Río Negro).
News from South Africa - SANAS
South African National Accreditation System (SANAS)
SANAS launched new accreditation programme - Mr Tumelo Ledimo, Project Manager
The roll out of this new accreditation programme for Energy Management Systems (EnMS) for certification bodies was the result of work done by a SANAS working group of technically knowledgeable experts who developed the SANAS technical requirements. The working group must be commended for their commitment and robust engagement to complete the technical requirements within the time. The technical requirements address scopes of accreditation and the minimum qualification and experience in EnMS.
Stakeholders involved in the implementation and certification of energy management systems were invited to attend the launch. The workshop was held at the Manhattan Hotel in Pretoria on 6 February 2014.
We all know that energy costs have risen globally and in South Africa over the past years. Energy management has therefore become important for the reduction of energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions. Organisations’ performance is no longer measured only in terms of profits made for the year, but also on how sustainable and environmentally friendly they made those profits. Thus, EnMS has become one of the key performance indicators.
SANS/ISO 50001 EnMS is a voluntary international standard. It applies to organisations of any size, and gives guidelines for establishing, managing and improving their energy consumption and efficiency.
The SANS/ISO 50001 standard aims to do the following:
- Assist organisations in improving energy efficiency, energy use and consumption
- Create transparency and facilitate communication on the management of energy resources
- Promote energy management best practices and behaviour
- Assist facilities in evaluating and prioritising the implementation of new energy-efficient technologies
- Provide a framework for promoting energy efficiency throughout the supply chain
- Facilitate energy management improvements for greenhouse gas emission reduction projects
The purpose of SANS/ISO 50001 EnMS is to enable organisations to establish the systems and processes necessary to improve energy performance, including energy efficiency, use and consumption. The implementation of SANS/ISO 50001 EnMS is also intended to lead to reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and other related environmental impacts and energy costs through the systematic management of energy. Therefore, the implementation of EnMS by South African organisations will be very beneficial to environmental sustainability and energy conservation.
Accreditation is internationally and nationally recognised as a reliable and transparent method of confirming the technical competence of conformity assessment bodies (CABs), such as certification bodies, testing laboratories and inspection bodies. SANAS, as the sole accreditation body of the Republic of South Africa, provides formal recognition of CABs’ technical competence to perform certification, testing and inspection functions as per their scope of accreditation. SANAS is also recognised internationally by the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC) and the International Accreditation Forum (IAF).
Accreditation has proven to reduce the risk of inaccurate results and enhance public confidence and assurance in the results that are produced from the CABs that are accredited. With this new accreditation programme, which was rolled out on 6 February 2014, SANAS will be providing third-party attestation of the technical competence of the certification bodies that will be certifying organisations’ energy management systems in accordance with SANS/ISO 50001. The SANAS-accredited CABs will be certifying organisations on how well they have fulfilled the requirements stated in SANS/ISO 50001. The certification will be based on the evidence of tangible energy management provided by the organisation endeavouring to achieve recognition for its efforts in managing its energy.
The workshop was used as the platform to roll out the SANAS accreditation programme for EnMS, and was also used to inform EnMS stakeholders that SANAS is ready to accredit certification bodies that are to offer certification in EnMS. During the workshop, the accreditation process of SANAS was presented and explained. SANAS applauded for timely delivery and the efficiency with which they delivered the EnMS accreditation programme. The expectation is that organisations that have implemented the EnMS and those that envisage implementing it will in future require certification by an accredited certification bodies as such certification gives credibility and confidence to the implemented systems.
Status of Measurement and Verification (M & V) in South Africa
South Africa has come a long way since the formal introduction of ‘Measurement and Verification (M & V)’ to energy efficiency, in 2000. The country has been amongst the first globally, to officially introduce a standard (SANS 50010:2011) for M & V and the accreditation of those who may perform M&V, which has led to South Africa becoming involved and nominated to lead the international ISO 50001 Workgroup dealing with the M&V of energy efficiency.
The fairly recent advent of Energy Efficiency (12-I and 12-L) Tax Incentives, where a high level of accuracy is required, necessitated the introduction of an independent accreditation system to ensure that M & V Practitioners do indeed have the necessary competence, which includes qualifications, systems and (calibrated) equipment in place, to accurately perform the task of M & V. The South African National Accreditation System (SANAS), who has the mandate in terms of Act 19 of 2006, ‘The accreditation for Conformity Assessment, Calibration and Good Laboratory Practice Act’, to perform this task, have developed all the necessary systems to fulfil this mandate. Criteria for accreditation have been established and agreed to by relevant stakeholders, and it includes specific requirements for various scopes.
SANAS is therefore ‘open for business’ to accredit M & V facilities in South Africa, in line with SANS 50010 and ISO/IEC 17020.
The uptake of companies (facilities) requesting SANAS-accreditation has been sluggish seemingly because most M&Vs were waiting for the Tax incentive Regulation to be promulgated, as this would guarantee a demand for accredited M&V service. The Regulations for the 12-L Energy Efficiency Tax Incentives were released on 1 November 2013 and this Regulation does indeed stipulate the compulsory requirement of using a SANAS accredited facility (with the requisite M & V Professional/ Practitioner), to carry out the necessary Baseline Determinations and Annual Performance Assessments, to qualify for the tax incentive.
Accredited M&V Facilities
SANAS would like to congratulate the three (3) M & V facilities accredited to date:
EEMV0001: Veritek (Pty) Ltd - accredited on 07 February 2013.
EEMV0002: Onga Energy Efficiency and Management (Pty) Ltd - accredited on 17 May 2012.
EEMV0003: Stellenbosch University Measurement and Verification (SUMV) – accredited on 19 December 2013.
- The 12-L Tax Incentives are largely the responsibility of National Treasury (through their Agency, the South African Revenue Services, (SARS)), and in conjunction with the DoE, (through their Agency, the South African National Energy Development Institute, (SANEDI)). There is however, a number of Distribution of Revenue Act (DORA) funded municipal energy efficiency programmes that the DoE are administering, which also require a stringent M & V (and reporting) process to National Treasury.
- Eskom, as a State Owned Company with the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE), as their shareholder, receive funding approval through the Multi-Year Pricing Determination (MYPD) from the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (NERSA), to implement various Integrated Demand Management (IDM) programmes in the country, for which NERSA requires independent M & V..
- SANAS on the other hand, as a public entity and an Agency of the Department of Trade and Industry (dti), have during the process of public consultations on the 12-L Tax Incentives, been approached by business through Business Unity South Africa (BUSA), to develop an accreditation system for M & V in South Africa.
- Last, but not least, there are the broader energy consuming industry/ public and international donor community out there, who want the assurance that there is consistency, transparency and accuracy in the way energy savings are calculated, incentivised and reported on, especially when it comes to claiming tax incentives, which carry serious penalties for the submission of incorrect information.
BUSA Business Unity South Africa
DEA Department of Environmental Affairs
DoE Department of Energy
DORA Distribution of Revenue Act
DPE Department of Public Enterprises
dti Department of Trade and Industry
EWSETA Energy and Water Sector Education Training Authority
ISO International Standards Organisation
M & E Monitoring and Evaluation
M & V Measurement and Verification
NERSA National Energy Regulator of South Africa
NQF National Qualifications Framework
RFP Request for Proposals
SANAS South African National Accreditation System
SAQA South African Qualifications Authority
SARS South African National Revenue Services
SANS South African National Standard
SMME Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises
SANAS accredits South Africa's first Occupational Hygiene Approved Inspection Authority
SANAS is proud to introduce VDH Industrial Hygiene cc as the first Approved Inspection Authority (AIA) to be accredited by SANAS and approved by the Department of Labour (DoL).
In December 2010, the DoL approached SANAS to discuss its desire to use accreditation to determine the competence of AIAs in the occupational hygiene field. The DoL’s Inspectorate was experiencing a market failure in the performance of some of the AIAs it had approved, brought about by the inconsistent and non-standard performance of practitioners.
The DoL and SANAS set about determining criteria for accreditation in this field, with the help of technically knowledgeable stakeholders who were invited to form the SANAS Specialist Technical Committee (STC). Once the criteria and scope had been determined, SANAS and the DoL conducted workshops to inform stakeholders about the accreditation process. This was followed by training workshops on the standard ISO/IEC 17020 around May 2011. SANAS conducted another workshop in November 2012, where SANAS announced that it was ready to process applications for accreditation.
SANAS congratulates VDH Industrial Hygiene cc for being a pioneer in its field.
TAF Accredited Civil Engineering Laboratories
Taiwan Accreditation Foundation (TAF)
Recently, TAF enhanced collaboration with the Third District Maintenance Construction Office, Ministry of Transportation and Communications. The quality of public construction requires the combined effort from regulator, construction contractor and civil engineering testing laboratory. Over the past few years, TAF advocated this concept which has come to receive recognition by the general public as well as regulatory authority. Regulator and construction contractor together decided the quality of the public construction upon its onset. As the check point, civil engineering testing laboratories merely provide the assurance. Placing emphasis on the regulation of civil engineering testing laboratories alone cannot effectively improve the quality of resulting construction. The ultimate goal is to strengthen the control of the quality of material and construction in the system.
In 2013, TAF and the Third District Maintenance Construction Office conducted a series of joint surveillance assessments of ten selected TAF accredited laboratories. The new regulatory system allows contractors to choose among all accredited testing laboratories. Compared with the previous situation, this has reduced the chance of occurrence of manipulated results by single appointed laboratory under pressure from the contractor. Through the joint assessment, regulator can have better grasp of the management of the testing laboratories, and collect information of the construction contractors and put their history of performance in perspective.
In this newly developed regulatory system, the Third District Maintenance Construction Office expressed that they quickly observed an improvement in the quality of public construction. The civil engineering testing laboratories state that with the implementation of joint assessment, they now suffer less attempted improper influence from the construction contractors. This successful collaboration between TAF and the Third District Maintenance Construction Office has attracted highly positive recognition in the Ministry of Transportation and Communications. The Third District Maintenance Construction Office plans to expand this collaboration and establish personnel training or other related support.
Future of the Global Accreditation System - UKAS
News from United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS)
The Future of the International Global Accreditation System
Accreditation is used worldwide. In most developed economies there is a body similar to UKAS. UKAS is the UK signatory to European and international agreements that recognise equivalence of results provided by accredited organisations in other signatory countries. These agreements facilitate the removal of technical barriers to trade, enabling goods to move freely in international markets. It is important for goods and services tested in or provided from the UK to be accepted worldwide without the need for additional evaluation and, increasingly, accreditation is the means chosen to achieve this.
An international accreditation system therefore strengthens global trade, enabling UK exports to be accepted worldwide and imports to be accepted in the UK as meeting the specified technical requirements. Were accreditation to operate as a purely national system, it would reinforce barriers to trade. As an international system, it effectively becomes a ‘passport’ for imports and exports.
The recognition of accreditation in Europe, the US and Asia Pacific over the last few years, establishing a regular workshop with the World Trade Organisation Technical Barriers to Trade (WTO TBT) Committee, and the use of accreditation by UNIDO in the development of trade insfrastructures, confirms that regulators and the marketplace have greater confidence in the system. In October’s edition of the Journal of World Trade, Erik Wijkstrom and Devin McDaniels reported that 10% of global trade ‘concerns’ could be resolved by reliable conformity assessment, underpinned by international recognition agreements.
The structure of global accreditation is divided into two levels: the regional level (The European Cooperation for Accreditation (EA) EA in Europe) and the global level (The International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC) for laboratory and inspection body accreditation, and the International Accreditation Forum (IAF) for certification activities). UKAS, like most Accreditation Bodies, is a member of both the regional and global associations.
ILAC and IAF are both associations of accreditation body members from around the world. The membership of both organisations has grown by around 40% over the past 10 years, with ILAC counting 147 members representing 112 economies. EA now counts 34 members.
Except for a dedicated full-time Secretariat, these associations are operated and managed by the active voluntary involvement of its members. This involvement remains a key principle in establishing consensus and a common approach, if the aim is to establish and enhance confidence in the operation of accreditation activities by accreditation body members.
However as these organisations increase in size, so does the complexity of managing and operating a larger organization. The costs of hosting and participating in meetings also rise accordingly. In some cases, new members are also joining the associations initially to receive the benefit, rather than with the purpose of contributing to the development of the global system.
In Europe, Regulation (EC) No 765/2008 provides a legal framework for the provision of accreditation services in both the voluntary and regulated sectors. The Regulation places an obligation on EU Member States to accept results issued by the conformity assessment bodies accredited by any of the EA MLA signatories. UKAS therefore needs this organisation to be effective if it is to be effective in itself. The decisions taken by ILAC and IAF determine the nature of the accreditation that UKAS and its equivalent bodies offer, and so it is essential that there is a strong UK voice in each of these organisations.
The issue facing the regions and the global associations is the competition for the same scarce resource. The ability to contribute to technical committees, working groups, peer evaluations, and general assemblies at both the regional and global level already puts a strain on member resources.
At the recent IAF-ILAC Joint General Assembly meetings in Seoul, a session led by Vagn Anderson, from the Danish Accreditation Body (DANAK), focused on the relationship between the regional and global associations. He noted that as the work is being done by the same limited pool of individuals, whether at the regional or global level, it is essential that it is only done once and in the most cost effective manner. For ILAC and IAF to cope with the increasing demand for resources, there needs to be better use of the resources in the regions. If sufficient and qualified resources are allocated to issues of global impact, it is vital that these issues are dealt with at one level, and not in parallel.
Harmonisation of the global and regional work can only be achieved if there is a common and agreed understanding of the separation of activities and responsibilities. There will need to be full support from the regions and the global associations at the Executive levels in the allocation and execution of work items. While regional associations will have to meet the needs of regional regulation and stakeholder requirements, the global strategy for the development of accreditation must be dealt with at the global level.
ILAC and IAF members voted against a merger in 2009, and while much work has been done to coordinate meeting schedules and some work activities, there is still duplication of work and a level of cost associated with having two separate associations.
Both ILAC and IAF are currently in the process of setting out their strategic plans for the next five years. The relationship between the two organisations, and their interaction with the regional associations, is a core strategic issue. Models are being explored to effectively resource the peer evaluation to ensure that the arrangements maintain credibility with the marketplace, as well as being able to respond to market need. Consideration will be given to the minimum contribution required from each member, and seeking ways of compensating those members that provide significant input.
While a merged organization will not be realised in the next five years, it is clear from the recent remarks made by Randy Dougherty, IAF Chair, and Pete Unger, ILAC Chair, that ‘the futures of IAF and ILAC are intertwined’. The organisations regularly present a single voice to global influencers such as the WTO, UN and the EU Commission. There are a growing number of work programmes that are ‘joined up’, and efforts to align common terminology and documents. Looking beyond 2020 and the next strategic planning period, the need and political will for two separate entities is likely to have diminished, and the aspiration of ‘tested, inspected or certified once, accepted everywhere’ can be delivered by a single global association.
 Journal of World Trade Improving Regulatory Governance: International Standards and the WTO TBT Agreement by Erik Wijkstrom and Devin McDaniels (October 2013)
News from ACCREDIA
THE ROLE OF ACCREDITATION FOR PROMOTION OF THE ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY IN BUILDINGS
ACCREDIA signed an agreement with ITACA, the Institute for innovation and transparency of tenders and environmental compatibility, for the promotion of certifications issued under accreditation in support of regional policies for the environmental sustainability of buildings.
Keenly awaited by business and by professionals, the collaboration between ACCREDIA and ITACA draws up a single national standard for the environmental sustainability of buildings together with the definition of a unified certification system and, on a voluntary basis, to coordinate and integrate it with the regional systems already in place and based on the “Itaca Protocol” and the national technical system (UNI and CEN).
The aim to guarantee the independence, impartiality and competence of conformity assessment against the reference standards.
Indeed, the evolution of standards of quality of new buildings and sustainable construction has generated an increase in the requests for guarantees in their performance which can be obtained also by means of energy consumption controls, materials used and waste management.
The agreement with ITACA is a part of the activities being undertaken by ACCREDIA in terms of environmental protection also with other entities and institutions, in particular with the Ministry for the Environment, with the aim of guaranteeing the competence of conformity certification in compliance with environmental standards.
“With this agreement”, says ACCREDIA President, Federico Grazioli, “we’re able to offer to the market a parameter of reference for quality assessment in construction. Together with ITACA we can respond more effectively and with greater coordination to the evolution of standards, satisfy and promote awareness of sustainable construction and environmental protection. ACCREDIA’s commitment is to work with the Public Administrations to ensure the reliability of certification, also in the construction industry.”
Ugo Cavallera, President of ITACA and Culture Minister for the region of Piedmont,, said, “A national process of voluntary certification in the construction sector in accordance with the “Itaca Protocol” aims to satisfy the growing demand for qualification with regard to the principles of environmental sustainability, with guarantees of independence, impartiality and competence on the part of people assessing conformity against the applicable standards.”
Eurachem Workshop on Quality in Analytical Measurements
The Eurachem is organising an international workshop on “Quality in Analytical Measurements” to be held in Lisbon on Monday 19 to Wednesday 21 May 2014. This workshop will cover the most challenging technical details of the analytical process, including the chemical description of the analytical problem, producing measurements with adequate traceability and uncertainty, interpreting results based on objective evidence and reporting results to the client. The workshop will include invited lectures, short communications, poster sessions and breakout sessions. This event will also celebrate the 25th Anniversary of Eurachem.
You can find updated information about this workshop in the website of the event (click here) and request the addition of your email address to the workshop mailing list (click here).