26th EA CC meeting and 26th EA IC meeting

International activities

26th meeting of the EA Certification Committee (EA CC) and 26th meeting of the EA Inspection Committee (EA IC) were held in Madrid, Spain, in the period between 1st and 3rd October 2013 and were hosted by the Accreditation Body of Spain (ENAC).

Draft versions of the new EA documents were discussed at the CC meeting given that these pertained to the witnessing of the work of certification bodies providing certification of management systems and revision of documents EA 6/03 (EA Document for Recognition of Verifiers under the EU ETS Directive) and EA 6/02 (EA Guidelines on the Use of EN 45 011 and ISO/IEC 17021 for Certification to EN ISO 3834) having in mind that the new standard was published (ISO/IEC 17065). Furthermore, the application of  the new IAF mandatory documents were discussed – IAF MD10:2013 Assessment of Certification Body Management of Competence in Accordance with ISO/IEC 17021:2011, IAF MD12:2013 Assessment of Certification Activities for Cross-Frontier Accreditation, including the application of the new version of IAF MD5:2013 IAF Mandatory Document for Duration of QMS and EMS Audits.

The results of the working groups and bodies relating to certification were presented: food working group, GHG (greenhouse gases) and environmental protection working groups. Additionally, status of the new versions of standards of ISO/IEC 17021 series since ISO/IEC TS 17021-3 (Conformity assessment – Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of management systems – Part 3: Competence requirements for auditing and certification of quality management systems) was published in May 2013, whereas the transitional period for the implementation thereof was set to be two years. However, the document entitled ISO/IEC TS 17021-4:2013 Conformity assessment – Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of management systems – Part 4: Competence requirements for auditing and certification of event sustainability management systems was published in the meantime.

Additionally, the application of ISO/IEC 17067:2013 Conformity assessment – Fundamentals of product certification and guidelines for product certification schemes was discussed, including the newly published ISO/IEC TS 17023:2013 Conformity assessment - Guidelines for determining the duration of management system certification audits, and a need to draft guidelines for the application of the new version of ISO/IEC 17024, ISO/IEC 17024:2012, and the new standard, ISO/IEC 17065:2012.

Questions raised by the delegates were also discussed for the purpose of the meeting.

Experiences of accreditation bodies related to the transitional period for the new version of ISO/IEC 17020, ISO/IEC 17020:2012, were presented at the IC meeting when the work of the Task Force Group for drafting the guidelines for the application of this standard was also presented. Delegates also discussed the modes to assess certain critical points of the new version of the standard and the modes to perform assessments given the two options for the regulation of IB management systems having in mind the new interpretation of the CASCO committee.

The mode of operation in the field of vehicle inspection was tackled (revision of EA 5/02 EA guidance on the application of EN 45004 in recurrent inspection of motor vehicles), including innovative technologies in the field of environmental protection, need to draft the new guidelines in the field of forensic science (revision of ILAC G19 Guidelines for Forensic Science Laboratories), flexible scopes, whereas a special emphasis was on the issues previously raised by the delegates.

The delegates were explained the results of the survey (that national accreditation bodies participated in) conducted by the Swedish Accreditation Body (SWEDAC) in the field of accreditation of clinical autopsy.

The next committee meetings will be held at the end of March 2014 when these will be hosted by the Norwegian Accreditation Body (NA).

Ljubica Živanić and Jovana Zečević attended the meeting on behalf of ATS.