This year’s theme for World Accreditation Day (9 June 2016) focuses on how accreditation can be a global tool to support public policy for all areas in the public sector – national and local government regulators. To help explain the use of accredited conformity assessment, the Public Sector Assurance website www.publicsectorassurance.org has been established showcasing over 150 different global examples where accreditation has been used to support public policy efforts.
I am pleased to note, as is the case in many economies now, the adoption of the global multilateral mutual recognition arrangements by the national government agencies of the United States. In particular, the ILAC MRA has been referenced by at least ten US government regulatory and procurement agencies. There is emerging use of the ILAC MRA at the state government level as well. The specification of the ILAC MRA signatory accreditation bodies as a prerequisite for accepting accredited results supports programs for toy safety, energy efficiency, environmental remediation, nuclear reactor equipment, forensic science, construction and transportation product safety.
Recently published US government conformity assessment policy encourages agencies to identify their conformity assessment needs in such areas as regulatory compliance and enforcement, procurement, and other programmatic contexts and to assess whether the use of private sector conformity assessment mechanisms in lieu of or in conjunction with government conformity assessment procedures would be beneficial, where such use is feasible and appropriate and not otherwise prohibited by law. Agencies should also consider whether reliance on international conformity assessment schemes (e.g., ILAC MRA) would meet their conformity assessment needs.
As in previous years, World Accreditation 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 and the leaders of the business community. I am pleased to participate in the celebration of World Accreditation Day in Hong Kong, hosted by HKAS, one of the bodies instrumental in supporting the early development of the global accreditation infrastructure, in particular APLAC as well as ILAC.
I extend my best wishes to all hosting World Accreditation Day events for success and thank you for supporting this important activity and initiative of ILAC and IAF.