THE DEPARTMENT OF BUSINESS, INNOVATION AND SKILLS ISSUES GUIDANCE TO UK BUSINESSES ENCOURAGING THEM TO USE NATIONALLY ACCREDITED CERTIFICATION.

ABCB has been successful in prompting the Department of Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) to state the UK Government's support for UKAS accredited certification. BIS has published a statement on its website in which it encourages UK businesses, Government and local authorities seeking third party certification to do so with a certification body that is accredited by the UK's national accreditation body, UKAS.

Accreditation is covered by a European Regulation EC 765/2008 which requires each EU Member State to appoint a national accreditation body. The UK Government has appointed the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) as the UK's national accreditation body. Article 7(1) of this regulation states that;

  • 'Where a conformity assessment body requests accreditation it shall do so with the national accreditation body of the Member State in which it is established or with the national accreditation body to which the Member State has recourse in accordance with Article 4(2)'

BIS has clarified the position, under Regulation 765, of certification bodies that are claiming to be accredited by organisations other than UKAS or other national accreditation bodies appointed by Member States. They state that:

  • 'Accreditation within the meaning of the Regulation (765) can only be obtained (in the UK) from the United Kingdom Accreditation Service by virtue of the Regulation.
  • An organisation therefore that is suggesting it is accredited in the sense of the Regulation when they are not is likely to be guilty of an offence under the Business Protection from Misleading Marketing Regulations (2008).'

The full content of the BIS statement can be viewed through the following link: www.bis.gov.uk/