ILAC’s Role

The primary purpose of ILAC is to establish an international arrangement between member accreditation bodies based on peer evaluation and mutual acceptance. ILAC is the principal international co-operation for:

  • Developing and harmonising laboratory, inspection body, proficiency testing provider and reference material producer accreditation practices.

115 accreditation bodies from over 117 economies have signed the ILAC Mutual Recognition Arrangement (ILAC MRA). The accreditation bodies that are signatories to the ILAC MRA have been peer evaluated in accordance with ISO/IEC 17011 to demonstrate their competence. Detailed information is available from the ILAC MRA and Signatories page.

  • Recognising accredited calibration laboratories, testing laboratories, medical testing laboratories, inspection bodies, proficiency testing providers and reference material producers internationally under the ILAC MRA.

The ILAC MRA signatory accreditation bodies assess and accredit conformity assessment bodies against the relevant international standards, including calibration laboratories using ISO/IEC 17025, testing laboratories using ISO/IEC 17025, medical testing laboratories using ISO 15189, inspection bodies using ISO/IEC 17020, proficiency testing providers using ISO/IEC 17043 and reference material producers using ISO 17034. The results from the accredited conformity assessment bodies of the ILAC MRA signatories are then able to be recognised under the ILAC MRA.

  • Promoting laboratory, inspection body, proficiency testing provider and reference material producer accreditation to industry, governments, regulators and consumers.

ILAC promotes the increased use and acceptance of accredited calibration, testing, medical testing and inspection data and results, proficiency testing programs and reference materials internationally. Industry, governments, regulators and consumers are encouraged to use and accept results from accredited conformity assessment bodies, including in other economies. By accepting products across national borders, the need for them to undergo additional testing or inspection in each country into which they are provided is removed. Governments and Regulators can therefore take advantage of the ILAC MRA to support the provision of local or national services, such as providing safe food and clean drinking water, providing energy, delivering health and social care or maintaining an unpolluted environment, and further develop or enhance trade agreements. Examples of how regulators are using the ILAC MRA can be viewed here.

  • Assisting and supporting developing accreditation systems.

As part of its international approach, ILAC provides advice and assistance to organisations from developing economies that are in the process of developing their own accreditation systems. These developing organisations are able to participate in ILAC as Associate members, and access the resources of ILAC’s more established members.

The Advantages of being an Accredited LaboratoryWhy use an Accredited Laboratory?Why become an accredited inspection body?Why use an Accredited Inspection Body?