The International Accreditation Service, Inc., (IAS) achieved full signatory status to the Pacific Accreditation Cooperation (PAC) Multilateral Recognition Arrangement (MLA) during a signing ceremony on June 17 at the PAC Plenary meeting in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The PAC MLA recognizes IAS for accrediting Management System Certification Bodies (MSCB), specifically in the areas of quality management systems (QMS) and environmental management systems (EMS). PAC also renewed recognition of the IAS Product Certification Agency accreditation program.
PAC recognition of IAS for accrediting management system certification bodies in the areas of QMS and EMS enables IAS clients to enjoy global recognition and acceptance of their IAS-endorsed certifications.
“We believe that the PAC recognition, coupled with IAS’s focus on customer service will help our programs grow considerably,” said IAS President Chuck Ramani. “We are very pleased that PAC has recognized the IAS Management System Certification Bodies Accreditation Program.”
“The PAC MLA status is a significant step forward and will be tremendously valuable to clients and the ICC Family of Companies—IAS, ICC-Evaluation Service and our newest member the Solar Rating & Certification Corporation,” said ICC Chief Executive Officer Dominic Sims. “The IAS team has worked diligently to reach this goal, and my congratulations goes out to all of them for their efforts.” Accreditation by IAS demonstrates that certification bodies (CB) have been assessed and found to be competent to audit, monitor and certify products, processes and services, quality management and environmental management systems. Accreditation also provides CB’s with greater confidence that their certifications meet legal and technical requirements imposed by regulators and/or specifiers at global, national and local levels.
The IAS Management System Certification Body Accreditation Program is based on ISO/IEC 17021: Conformity assessment – Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of management systems. IAS accredits MSCBs that certify quality management systems under ISO 9001and environmental management systems under ISO 14001. IAS also accredits Product Certification Agencies that certify products, processes and services under ISO/IEC Standard 17065.
Accreditation is a formal, independent verification that a program, institution, or company meets established quality standards and is competent to carry out specific conformity assessment tasks. Accreditation has been used for more than 50 years as the definitive means to evaluate organizations. It is used by all the world’s major economies and many developing economies.
A recognized accreditation body since 1975, IAS is a nonprofit, public benefit corporation and part of the International Code Council Family of Companies. IAS is one of the leading accreditation bodies in the United States and a signatory to several international mutual recognition arrangements (MRAs). IAS accredits more than 800 organizations, including personnel certification bodies, testing and calibration laboratories, product certification agencies, management system certification bodies, inspection agencies, special inspection agencies, inspection programs for metal building manufacturers, metal building assembler inspection programs, fabricator inspection programs, training agencies, curriculum developers, field evaluation bodies, fire prevention and life safety departments, building departments, and building department service providers.
The Pacific Accreditation Cooperation (PAC) is an association of accreditation bodies and other interested parties whose objective is to facilitate trade and commerce among economies in the Asia Pacific region. PAC promotes the international acceptance of accreditations granted by its accreditation body members, based on the equivalence of their accreditation programs.
PAC operates within the framework of the International Accreditation Forum (IAF) and in cooperation with other regional groups of accreditation bodies around the world. IAF is the worldwide association of accreditation bodies and other bodies interested in conformity assessment which exist primarily to facilitate world trade by working to remove technical barriers that may flow from demands for certification and/or registration of management systems, products and like processes.
For more information about IAS accreditation programs, visit www.iasonline.org/.