Accreditation is used worldwide.
There are two global organisations: ILAC (International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation) for the accreditation of laboratories and inspection bodies and IAF (International Accreditation Forum) for the accreditation of certification bodies.
These two organisations incorporate regional bodies from these territories:
- Europe - EA (European Co-operation for Accreditation), which is a member of ILAC, IAF, signatory to the ILAC and IAF international multilateral arrangements and covers accreditation of laboratories, verifiers, inspection and certification bodies,
- Africa - SADCA (Southern African Development Community in Accreditation), which is a member of ILAC, IAF and covers accreditation of laboratories and certification bodies,
- Asia-Pacific - APLAC (Asia Pacific Laboratory Accreditation Co-operation), which is a member of ILAC, signatory to the ILAC international multilateral arrangement and covers accreditation of laboratories and inspection bodies,
- PAC (Pacific Accreditation Co-operation), which is a member of IAF, signatory to the IAF international multilateral arrangement and covers accreditation of certification bodies,
- America - IAAC (Inter American Accreditation Co-operation) (Inter American Accreditation Co-operation), which is a member of ILAC, IAF, signatory to the ILAC and IAF international multilateral arrangements and covers accreditation of laboratories, inspection and certification bodies.
- Arabian Peninsula - ARAC (Arab Accreditation Co-operation), which is a member of ILAC, IAF and covers Accreditation of laboratories, inspection and certification bodies.
SNAS IS A FULL MEMBER OF:
- EA from 1998. This regional organization in Europe associates national accreditation bodies of countries of the EU, EFTA or EU candidates. A current list of the EA members is accessible.
- ILAC from 1996. ILAC a global association for cooperation of accreditation bodies accrediting conformity assessment bodies including calibration and testing laboratories (ISO/IEC 17025), medical laboratories (ISO 15189) and inspection bodies (ISO/IEC 17020). A current list of the ILAC members is accessible.
- IAF from 1997. IAF is an international organization merging accreditation bodies accrediting conformity assessment bodies performing product certification (ISO/IEC 17065), certification of persons (ISO/IEC 17024), certification of management systems (ISO/IEC 17021), validation and verification (ISO/IEC 14065).
A current list of the IAF members is accessible.
SNAS as a member of IAF and a signatory of IAF MLA has adopted IAF Code of Conduct on August 4, 2004.
- FALB (Forum of accreditation and licencing bodies) from 2002. FALB was established in line with Regulation (EC) No 1221/2009 on the voluntary participation by organizations in a Community eco-management and audit scheme (EMAS) to harmonize accreditation processes and surveillances of performance of environmental verifiers and to manage peer evaluations
A key objective of the international accreditation network is the mutual recognition of the international agreement MLA / MRA.
Accreditation bodies which are the EA members have the possibility of becoming signatories of the EA Multilateral Agreements (EA MLA), only after successfully undergoing a thorough the EA peer evaluations. There is also possibility of becoming signatories of the ILAC Mutual recognition (ILAC MRA) or IAF Multilateral agreements (IAF MLA) at international level between or among the ILAC or IAF members. The regional organisations are relays for the global organisations in that they have developed regional recognition agreements with the result that ILAC and IAF are not required to systematically audit all of their members.
An accreditation granted from an accreditation body signatory of one of the above mentioned agreements, is recognized in Europe and worldwide, for the scopes comprised in these agreements. The international recognition agreements facilitate the breaking down of technical barriers to trade and access on the export market through
- recognition of the equivalence of accreditation services provided by signatories of MLA / MRA agreements,
- reaching the uniform and transparent approach to accreditation,
- recognition of reports and certificates issued by the accredited conformity assessment bodies regionally (EA), also all over the world (IAF, ILAC),
- building and strengthening of the confidence to the accreditation systems recognized within MLA / MRA agreements,
- supporting implementation of the harmonized standards and guidelines in the field of accreditation,
- supporting and strengthening of the peer evaluations system of accreditation bodies.
International agreements ensure the validity and credibility of accreditation as an effective instrument of assessments and confirmation of competence of conformity assessment bodies on the regional and global market.
Under the international agreements of mutual recognition all accreditation and certification has equal value in each signatory country, eliminating the necessity of any additional conformity assessment, surveillance, inspection or evaluation.
The accreditation mark of one of the signatories to MLA / MRA agreements on the test or inspection report or on the certificate serves as a passport in international market. No further tests, inspections or assessments of the products, services or of professional competence are needed.
By signing these agreements it means that the signatories recognise and accept the equivalence of the accreditation systems operated by the signing members, and also the reliability of the conformity assessment results provided by conformity assessment bodies accredited by the signing members.
Definition of peer evaluation is quoted in Article 2, clause 16 of Regulation (EC) No 765/2008:
"peer evaluation" shall mean a process for the assessment of a national accreditation body by other national accreditation bodies, carried out in accordance with the requirements of this Regulation, and, where applicable, additional sectoral technical specifications;
The European model of peer evaluations was legally established by Regulation (EC) No 765/2008 (Article 10) which set up and strengthened the trust of activities of accreditation bodies without doubt. By principle of designation of only one nationally accreditation body in EU member state and of the peer evaluation system organised by European Accreditation at regular intervals the accreditation has been expanded also in a regulated area. It has taken its particular place in the conformity assessment system with its credibility, transparency and sophisticated effective control system of accreditation bodies. EA peer evaluation system has laid down foundations for the concluding of multilateral recognition agreements between accreditation bodies. In consequence of this the principle of equivalence of results of conformity assessment bodies’ activities was recognized and accepted among countries.
MLA / MRA signatory status granted to the accreditation body confirms its competence to perform accreditation service and fulfilment of requirements given to accreditation bodies accrediting conformity assessment bodies by the international standard ISO/IEC 17011, Regulation (EC) No 765/2008 and the mandatory application documents of the EA, ILAC, IAF.
The system and process of peer evaluations is based on carefully reworked, unified and transparent criteria (https://european-accreditation.org/mutual-recognition/peer-evaluation/).
PEER EVALUATION RESULTS OF SNAS
- FALB Re-evaluation (type C)
in the field of environmental verifiers according the Regulation (EC) No 1221/2009 and standard ISO/IEC 17021 was performed from 22.9. - 23.9.2014. FALB team was comprised of representatives from Germany and Romania. Witness assessment of the SNAS performance during one surveillance in one environmental verifier.
Result of the FALB decision adopted at the meeting which took place on 14.– 15.4.2015:
Report on peer evaluation of SNAS was approved in the field:
- Environmental verification
- OECD Re-evaluation
in the field of good laboratory practice was performed from 20. - 24.4.2015. Team of GLP inspectors was comprised of representatives of Netherlands and New Zealand. Witness assessment of the SNAS performance was executed during one surveillance in one test facility. No non-conformities were found.
The finally report was discussed at the OECD GLP Working Group meeting (WG GLP OECD) in Nice in April 2016 and after discussion at plenum the conclusions of the report were accepted after the vote of the OECD WP GLP members. It has been confirmed that Slovakia continues to meet the criteria and the results of studies carried out by testing sites in Slovakia must be accepted under the Mutual Acceptance of Data (MAD).
- EA Re-evaluation
The re-evaluation was carried out in two parts:
- in the field of calibration, medical examination, inspection, verification, certification of management systems and certification of persons was carried out from 12. ÷ 16. 02. 2018. EA team was comprised of representatives of the accreditation bodies of: Cyprus, Czech Republic, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and United Kingdom;
- in the field of testing laboratories and certification of product was carried out from 05. ÷ 09. 11. 2018. EA team was comprised of representatives of the accreditation bodies of: Belgium, Poland and United Kingdom;
Results of the decision of the EA MAC meeting held on 08 ÷ 09 May 2019:
SNAS remains an EA-MLA signatory in the fields:
- Testing (including Medical examination)
- Product certification
- Management system certification
- Certification of persons
- Validation and Verification
- EA Initial Evaluation
for extension of EA MLA signatory SNAS for a new field - Proficiency Testing Providers according to ISO/IEC 17043 and for assessment of implementation new version of standards ISO/IEC 17011: 2017 was performed from 05. ÷ 09. 2018. EA team was comprised of representatives of the accreditation bodies of France and United Kingdom.
Results of the decision of the EA MAC meeting held on 08 ÷ 09 May 2019:
SNAS performs activities in accordance with ISO/IEC 17011: 2017 and becomes an EA-MLA signatory in the field:
- Proficiency Testing Providers
The following SNAS evaluation is planned by EA in 2022.
SNAS underwent peer evaluations organized by the FALB in 2019.
- FALB Re-evaluation
in the field of environmental verifiers according the Regulation (EC) No 1221/2009 and standard ISO/IEC 17021-1 was performed from 07. ÷ 08. 02. 2019. FALB team was comprised of representatives from Estonia and Greece.
The peer review report has not yet been approved by the FALB.
Next information you can see:
Obligations in international organisations
As SNAS is a full member of international organizations EA, ILAC, IAF, FALB and MRA / MLA signatory it is obliged to fulfil, inter alia, additional requirements, as:
- Support and participation in the EA, FALB and OECD peer evaluation programmes,
- Exchange of information on the development and operation of accreditation systems (Cooperation with other NAB),
- Active participation in the work and decision making of the EA, ILAC, IAF General Assemblies and EA MLA Council (EA MAC),
- Active work in technical committees of the EA, ILAC, IAF and in working groups, where applicable,
- Participation in regional and international proficiency testing activities and other interlaboratory comparisons;
- Participation in the preparation and making comments of documents, standards and their updating, ...
SNAS has its representatives in:
- EA Laboratory Committee (EA LC)
- EA LC WG Testing
- EA LC WG Calibration
- EA LC WG Healthcare
- EA Certification Committee (EA CC)
- EA CC EU ETS Network Group
- EA CC WG Environment
- EA Inspection Committee (EA IC)
- EPTIS Steering Committee
- EA Search Facility WG
- EA Horizontal Harmonization Committee
- IAF WG GHG and Energy
- Forum of Accreditation and Licensing Bodies (FALB)
- OECD (GLP WG)