Islamabad - The Pakistan National Accreditation Council (PNAC) has secured a Multilateral Recognition Arrangement (MLA) with the Pacific Accreditation Cooperation (PAC) and International Accreditation Forum (IAF) for Quality Management System - ISO 9000 (QMS) and Environmental Management System - ISO 14000 (EMS) during the course of 20th PAC plenary meetings at Honolulu, USA.

Now PNAC is the 13th Accreditation Body of the pacific region to attain MLA signatory status in QMS and 15th Accreditation Body to attain signatory status in EMS. PNAC achieved this status with the support of the European Union (EU) funded Trade Related Technical Assistance (TRTA II) Programme.

Federal Minister for Science and Technology Zahid Hamid said acquisition to high quality standards related to certification would boost Pakistani exports to competitive lucrative markets.

In recognition of this achievement, Ministry of Science and Technology (MoST) and TRTA II Programme implemented by UNIDO organized a ceremony. 

Federal Minister for Science and Technology and Mr. Pierre Mayaudon, Acting Ambassador at the Delegation of the European Union to Pakistan handed-over the MLA signatory status certificate to the Director General of PNAC.

The minister speaking on the event remarked, “ Pakistani exporters are facing compliance and quality issues as major challenges in accessing the global markets. The tests performed in Pakistan and certificates issued here in the country have limited acceptance in target markets.  All it requires is to improve conformity assessment infrastructure and services in Pakistan,”

He further said by acquiring the ‘MLA’ status, the PNAC has enabled the country to save its foreign exchange incurred on account of accreditation from foreign accreditation bodies and this will also increase exports contributing ultimately to improvement the Balance of Payments.

Pierre Mayaudon, Acting Ambassador at the Delegation of the European Union to Pakistan on the occasion said that the EU is the first trading partner of Pakistan with a total volume of exchanges in excess of 8.5 billion Euros. And we are convinced that EU Pakistan cooperation will progress further if Pakistan is granted the new GSP Plus status by end, this year. He further said that the compliance and connectivity with the global market are two important factors and in this regard the PNAC’s acquiring MLA status will actively link Pakistani institutions with quality assurance bodies in the region and beyond.

Bruno Valanzuolo, Chief Technical Advisor of TRTA II programme reminding the extensive training programmes, seminars, workshops, bringing of world’s renowned experts in the fields of certifications and laboratory accreditation which led to achievement of this MLA for Quality Management System and Environmental Management System. He said that it’s the beginning of the long road ahead and in fact it puts lot of responsibility and pressure on PNAC and its professional assessors now to maintain this pride at the level desired by the international community.