1. KENAS AND ARSO SIGN MOU FOR THE ACCREDITATION OF CONFORMITY ASSESSMENT BODIES UNDER THE ARSO CONFORMITY ASSESSMENT PROGRAM
The African Organisation for Standardization (ARSO) and Kenya Accreditation Service (KENAS) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that enables certification bodies in Africa using the ARSO Eco Mark Africa (EMA) scheme to seek accreditation from KENAS.
On the 17th of August 2018, ARSO wrote to all accreditation bodies in Africa requesting for collaboration in the implementation of the ARSO Conformity Assessment Program (ACAP). All accreditation bodies expressed replied positively to ARSO’s request but, KENAS is the only accreditation body that expressed interest to develop an accreditation scheme for the ARSO ACAP program rules and procedures, through the signing of the MoU.
The MoU stipulates that KENAS is to develop an accreditation scheme for the ARSO ACAP program. KENAS shall assess and accredit Certification Bodies under the ARSO ACAP program which undertakes certification of products and services. Similarly, laboratories that are used concerning the ACAP program will be eligible for accreditation in line with the already established KENAS scheme for testing laboratories (ISO/IEC 17025).
To date, the ARSO ACAP program consists of seven certification schemes, namely:-
- Scheme A- Primary production (crops, livestock and aquaculture)
- Scheme B- Processing of foods
- Scheme C- Chain of custody
- Scheme D- African Eco Mark – Sustainability and eco-labelling
- Scheme E- African Traditional medicine
- Scheme F- Fishery
- Scheme G- Good Financial Granting Practice
At the initiative of the Conference of Ministers in charge of environment in 2008, the implementation of ARSO ACAP started four years ago with Scheme D. The EMA is a registered trademark owned by ARSO and is granted for certification of goods and services that conform to harmonized African sustainability standards. The mark has been registered in the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) and the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO).
Through this MoU, it is envisaged that both KENAS and ARSO shall engage in mutual exchange of information, experiences and capacity building activities related to the ARSO ACAP program schemes. KENAS’ accreditation will build confidence and firewall the certification bodies and laboratories operating under the ACAP program for the African region while ensuring their conformity to ISO/IEC 17065 and ISO/IEC 17067 standards on the system and product certification.
2. NTSA, KEBS and KENAS MOU TO ENHANCE MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY
The Kenya Accreditation Service (KENAS), Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) and National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in October 2016 which acknowledges the importance and contribution of Standards, Metrology, and Conformity Assessment to quality improvement, safety enhancement, production efficiency and commercial exchange.
The MoU outlines the role played by the three institutions in their respective capacities as quality infrastructure institutions in fulfilling the provision of the Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) of the World Trade Organization (WTO). This MoU also considers the need to promote standards, accreditation, and credible conformity assessments within the Republic of Kenya, as a means of protecting the interests of consumers, investors and other stakeholders.