Opening up trade with conformity assessment

In a continuing effort to reach a new market the biggest step is to use conformity assessment services that are modern and standard-based. The move helps to improve assess for products and services to international markets along with domestic trade. Testing, inspection, and certification are collectively known as conformity assessment which focuses on building trust that a product or service is safe and will work as intended, trust that regulations are being respected and trust that products sourced are compatible in international markets. For Vietnam, a country eager to access international markets and accelerate trade, investing in conformity assessment is the first step and lets the industries use the services.

Reducing obstacles

In this modern era, countries may want to set rules to protect the health of their citizens and set the rules. However, they should not create unnecessary obstacles to international trade.  For this reason, the country endorsed ISO standards as any technical regulations used should be based on international standards. As a result, it protects against discrimination and means exporting countries to adhere to the same requirements.

Trust in the result

Conformity assessment is the practice of showing that the product, service, or system meets the requirements of standards and the services are performed by auditors, laboratories, and certification and inspection bodies. However, it is important to trust the result. How do you know that a laboratory is doing its job correctly as doing it in the same way in another country is more important in world trade? As uniform as possible across the world ISO developed a standard called ISO/IEC 17025 laboratory management system which specifies the requirements for performing testing and calibration activities. Using this standard helps to ensure that the test results are reliable and more importantly comparable across countries and laboratories, reducing the need for multiple tests by both exporting and importing bodies. Moreover, it also related to a number of policies in a country where accreditation by the standards is a priority criterion for regulators. Therefore, the benefits of the standard are twofold for Vietnam they provide a set of international requirements that help conformity assessment bodies to develop their competence but also a basis for regulators to ensure that the operation of conformity assessment bodies is in line with international rules.

(Source ISO focus July-Aug 2016 edition page 30)