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Industry Canada Recognizes ANSI Accreditation of Telecommunications Product Certifiers under Phase II APEC MRA for Telecommunication


Washington, DC , Nov 04, 2003

The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) recently received notice that the scope of its accreditation program for telecommunications product certifiers has been expanded to include the recognition of telecommunications equipment that is compliant with requirements issued by Industry Canada.

The announcement, issued in late September by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), expands the role assigned to ANSI in June 2000 in a precedent-setting arrangement announced by the Federal Communications Commission, ANSI, and NIST. Under the arrangement, ANSI became a recognized accreditation body of product certifiers that test equipment such as radio transmitters, telephone handsets, modems and more to determine whether they satisfy FCC regulatory standards. Under the new program, tests results and product certification by U.S. Telecommunication Certification Bodies (TCBs) for this equipment will be accepted in Canada without the need to re-test the product.

The recognition procedures were performed under the NIST National Voluntary Conformity Assessment System Evaluation (NVCASE) program and have been agreed by the relevant regulatory bodies in both nations. The NIST NVCASE program helps federal agencies organize product certification and related activities for ensuring that products or processes comply with United States or foreign requirements. This is usually done in response to obligations spelled out in trade agreements.

“ANSI’s recognition is the first bi-lateral arrangement to be established under Phase II of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Telecommunications Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA),” said Reinaldo Balbino Figueiredo, ANSI program director of conformity assessment.

“The mutual recognition arrangement will serve to facilitate the trade of telecommunications equipment between the United States and Canada,” explained Figueiredo. “Manufacturers who sell this type of equipment in both the United States and Canada will now be able to submit their products for testing to ANSI-accredited certification laboratories and have the single set of test results accepted in both nations.”

Currently, 16 U.S. product certifiers are accredited by ANSI as competent to certify telecommunications products as FCC-compliant. These organizations compete for business generated by approximately 6,000 applications for product approvals each year. Ten (10) of these organizations have gone through the assessment process for consideration under the newly expanded scope of operation. Responsibility for approval of the ten requests falls to the ANSI Accreditation Committee; the committee’s decision is expected by the end of 2003.

For additional information, contact Reinaldo Balbino Figueiredo, (202-331-3611; rfigueir@ansi.org).

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