Memberships and interational recognition

DAkkS is a full member of EA, IAF and ILAC and a signatory of the multilateral recognition agreements (MLA/MRA) of these organisations. The goal of international cooperation: to enable the worldwide acceptance of conformity assessments through accreditation, with a view to reducing international barriers to trade.

Goals and purpose

The European co-operation for Accreditation (EA) constitutes the accreditation infrastructure within the EU, the European Free Trade Association and for candidates for accession to the European Union. The key mandate of EA as a network of cooperation among the European national accreditation bodies is to promote and harmonise the equivalence, transparency, uniformity and efficiency of accreditations in Europe and beyond. An important instrument for achieving this comparability and and for mutual recognition of accreditations is the peer evaluation process. Another central remit is to develop and coordinate accreditation criteria and guidelines in a manner that encourages harmonisation.

Peer Evaluation

All EA national accreditation bodies must undergo a peer evaluation on a regular basis. The goal of this evaluation is to ensure that accreditation bodies meet the requirements in place for the assessment, certification and regular monitoring of the technical competence of conformity assessment bodies. The judgements of this evaluation system are based on well-founded evaluation criteria and procedures, with reference in particular to the international standard ISO/IEC 17011, which sets out the requirements for accreditation bodies.

What is the EA MLA?

The EA Multilateral Agreement (EA MLA) is an agreement among the full members of the EA that recognises the equivalence and reliability of accreditations and accredited conformity assessment results from the signatory states. The key prerequisite for receiving the EA MLA status of accreditation body is a successful assessment as part of the EA’s peer evaluation process. This process also determines the areas to which the EA MLA applies.

At the global level, the EA MLA is recognised by IAF and ILAC. This means that test and inspection reports, calibration certificates or certificates from bodies with accreditation from a recognised EA MLA signatory are also accepted as equivalent by the signatories to the multilateral IAF MLA and ILAC MRA agreements.

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IAF und ILAC: Global accreditation

The issues concerning the two global accreditation organisations, the International Accreditation Forum, Inc. (IAF) and the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC), are by and large the same as the goals pursued by EA at the European level: to ensure the competence of the accreditation system and to promote cross-border recognition of accredited services. The great asset of mutual recognition requires uniform standards. This is why the formulation and continuous further development of its rules and regulations by the members of the committees are essential elements of the work and cooperation of IAF and ILAC. The agreed documents define the principles and guidelines for accreditation and supplement the requirements of ISO/IEC 17011, which must be met by all accreditation bodies.

IAF MLA und ILAC MRA

With the Multilateral Recognition Arrangement (IAF MLA), IAF ensures that certificates are accepted in principle in all signatory states to this agreement. This recognition is based on the assumption that the accreditation bodies of all MLA signatories set the same requirements for accreditation and that verification of the competence of a certification body is comparable.

Multilateral Recognition Arrangement (IAF MLA)

 

The ILAC Mutual Recognition Arrangement (ILAC MRA) works in the same way, again ensuring the worldwide acceptance of accredited test and inspection reports, calibration certificates and the results of proficiency testing (proficiency test providers).

ILAC Mutual Recognition Arrangement (ILAC MRA)

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Christina Huß

Staff Unit Qualitity Management

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