The European cooperation for Accreditation (EA)
On September 21, 1999 A2LA signed a bilateral mutual recognition agreement with the European cooperation for Accreditation (EA).
The agreement is intended to facilitate the acceptance of test and calibration data with a number of European countries whose national accreditation bodies have signed the EA Agreement. EA promotes the recognition and acceptance in all the signatory countries of certificates and reports issued by organizations accredited by national accreditation bodies who have signed the agreement.
By signing the agreement, the signatory accreditation bodies commit to promoting acceptance of the test reports/calibration reports issued by the laboratories accredited by the signatory accreditation bodies. However, accreditation bodies cannot guarantee acceptance by their stakeholders. As such, one of A2LA's primary functions is to assist A2LA-accredited laboratories in gaining acceptance of their data in the countries of the EA agreement signatories. Likewise, A2LA is committed to helping laboratories accredited by the EA agreement signatories obtain acceptance in the United States.
Through the EA MRA evaluation process, a uniform level of competence of the accredited bodies is assured, and the need for multiple assessments is diminished or eliminated. Ideally, a supplier would only need one certificate or report to satisfy the entire European market and all governments.
There are a number of different areas within the EA agreement, including testing laboratories, calibration laboratories, certification bodies (products, quality systems, personnel, environmental management systems) and inspection bodies. The bilateral agreement signed between A2LA and EA Multi-Lateral Agreement (MLA) signatories is for testing and calibration laboratories as outlined below (as of June 30, 2002):
A2LA staff is able to provide specific details regarding the names and contact information for the accreditation body in a specific country/economy listed above.
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