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U.S.-Russian Trade to Benefit from International Lab Accreditation Program

In an effort to expand trade between the United States and Russia, the Commerce Department`s National Institute of Standards and Technology today announced that an international laboratory accreditation program will be established to provide U.S. manufacturers and exporters with product test results that will comply with mandatory Russian certification requirements.

The new laboratory accreditation program is being created in response to a joint communiqu‚ on cooperation in conformity assessment issued on Dec. 16, 1993, by Vice President Albert Gore and Russian Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin. The communiqu‚ commits NIST and the State Committee of the Russian Federation for Standardization, Metrology, and Certification, known as GOSSTANDART, to develop mutual recognition agreements, or MRAs, for the acceptance of test data required for product certification.

As an initial step, NIST and GOSSTANDART will establish procedures whereby the Russian government will accept U.S. government accreditation of laboratories that are found competent to test products for compliance with the requirements of the Russian Consumer Protection Law of 1993. By the end of 1994, an international laboratory accreditation program will be implemented as the basis for GOSSTANDART officials to accept test results generated by U.S. laboratories that have been accredited under INTERLAP, the International Laboratory Accreditation Program operated by the NIST National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program.

An exchange of U.S. and Russian government and private- sector standards experts to review each other's laboratory accreditation practices will provide the confidence necessary to effect MRAs. Further progress in achieving MRAs is expected at the next meeting of the Intergovernmental U.S./Russian Business Development Committee's Standards Working Group, May 24-25, 1994, in Moscow. The group is co-chaired by Stanley I. Warshaw, director of the NIST Office of Standards Services, and Serguei F. Bezverkhi, president of GOSSTANDART.

As a non-regulatory agency of the Commerce Department's Technology Administration, NIST promotes U.S. economic growth by working with industry to develop and apply technology, measurements and standards.

Released January 31, 1994, Updated November 27, 2017