May 2019: EA has just been recognized by ILAC as the first regional co-operation body member of the ILAC MRA for accreditation of Proficiency Testing Providers (PTP) using ISO/IEC 17043.

EA is a recognized regional cooperation body of ILAC, it means that the EA Multilateral Agreement (EA MLA) and accreditations delivered by EA signatories are recognized by ILAC and covered by ILAC arrangements. Formal recognition of a regional cooperation body under the ILAC MRA is based on an evaluation of the regional cooperation body’s competence to operate a multilateral agreement.

In May 2017, EA was evaluated for the extension to PTP and Greenhouse gas verification and validation by an ILAC/IAF team composed of independent peer evaluators led by Wang Wah Wong. BELAC was the EA NAB witnessed for the PTP scope as part of the peer-evaluation process.

The objectives of the evaluation are to evaluate:

  • the implementation of the EA’s peer-evaluation process and its compliance with IAF/ILAC requirements;
  • the effectiveness and suitability of EA’s peer-evaluation system.

Following this evaluation, in May 2018, the Arrangement Council endorsed the decision of the Arrangement Management Committee (AMC) to extend the recognition of the EA MLA to the ILAC MRA for Proficiency Testing Providers (EN ISO/IEC 17043).

Initially, a second recognized regional co-operation body would have been needed to be successfully evaluated for PTP in order to start the implementation of the new MRA scope. With the recent publication of ILAC R6:052019 (clause 4), and the update of the required conditions to be fulfilled, EA is the first regional co-operation bodies recognised in ILAC for accreditation of PTP. 19 National Accreditation Bodies are signatories to the EA MLA for PTP.

Recognition by ILAC of its MLA for accreditation of reference material producers is the next step for EA. EA was evaluated for RMP during its regular re-evaluation in 2018 and 2019. A decision is expected in autumn 2019 in Frankfurt.

EA is already recognized under the ILAC MRA for Calibration (ISO/IEC 17025), Testing (ISO/IEC 17025), Medical Testing (ISO 15189) and Inspection (ISO/IEC 17020). EA is also recognized under the IAF MLA for Product Certification – (ISO/IEC 17065), Management Systems Certification (ISO/IEC 17021-1), Certification of Persons – (ISO/IEC 17024), and Validation and Verification (ISO 14065).