APLAC Experts Visit Russia

December 05, 2016

International experts performed an initial audit of the Federal Service for Accreditation in connection with the accession to APLAC Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA)

On November 9-19, 2016 international experts visited Russia to assess the Federal Service for Accreditation in the framework of its joining the MRA of the Asia-Pacific Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (APLAC) as a Full Member with respect to the accreditation of calibration and testing laboratories and centers.

The order of the Government of the Russian Federation No. 2468-р on the participation of RusAccreditation in the activities of APLAC was adopted on December 2, 2015. Currently, RusAccreditation is a full member of this organization. Accession of RusAccreditation to the regime of the Mutual Recognition Arrangement within APLAC presupposes that international auditors perform an on-site assessment of the compliance of the Russian national accreditation system with the requirements of ISO/IEC 17011 which establishes general requirements for accreditation bodies and mandatory APLAC documents adopted for its development. The accreditation bodies that have passed such an assessment may become members of APLAC Mutual Recognition Arrangement. The participation in this Arrangement automatically entails joining the Mutual Recognition Arrangement of the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC). Its signing will mean global recognition of the quality of Russian laboratories accredited by RusAccreditation.

During the visit, representatives of the international group of appraisers consisting of six experts from Australia, the United States, Canada, Singapore and Mongolia worked for several days in the central office of the Federal Service in Moscow, participated in the field inspection to the Volga Federal District and observed the process of rendering accreditation services while assessing 7 test and 2 calibration laboratories in Moscow, St. Petersburg, the Republic of Tatarstan, Orel and Tula Regions by Russian accreditation experts.

At the final meeting in RusAccreditation, the international auditors presented preliminary results of their work. The experts gave their comments and remarks. RusAccreditation has several months to eliminate them and after receiving information on the corrective actions implementation by the Federal Service for Accreditation, a final report will be submitted to APLAC Management for considering the accession of RusAccreditation to APLAC Mutual Recognition Arrangement.

Commenting on the results of the audit of the Federal Service for Accreditation by APLAC experts, the Head of the Department Alexey Khersontsevexpressed confidence that the existing inconsistencies would be eliminated within the allotted time, and underlined the scope and scale of the reform that has been carried out in the Russian Federation over the past five years. “The goal of this reform is to shape such a national system in the field of accreditation that would primarily meet the international requirements for accreditation and operate under transparent rules."

"Thanks to the consistent work of the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia, the necessary regulatory framework has been created. In practice we have a new area of ​​legislation regulating all processes in the accreditation field that determines the algorithms of interaction for all participants. A unified system of requirements for accredited persons was established; on the basis of international standards RusAccreditation management system was developed and implemented, an information infrastructure united all participants of the accreditation system, a pool of highly professional accreditation and technical experts that operate in all regions of Russia and set standards in practice was shaped", said Alexey Khersontsev.

According to Deputy Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation Savva Shipov, the external audit is one of the most important stages in the development of Russia's national accreditation system. "In fact, now we have come very close to solving the task we have been working on over the last five years – to shape a unified system of accreditation that meets international standards. This will allow us to achieve recognition of results from Russian accredited persons abroad. This is especially important in the context of tasks aimed at supporting Russian exports. This task is assigned by the government to federal authorities, including the Russian Ministry of Economic Development and RusAccreditation," said Savva Shipov.