As the leader of Canada’s standardization network, SCC is working with Canadian companies to help them bring their innovative ideas and products to the world. The international trade arena is more complex and competitive than ever before; some estimates contend that up to 80% of world trade is impacted by standardization.
One way SCC is supporting access to new markets is by helping to implement the Conformity Assessment (CA) Protocol within the Canada-European Union (EU) Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).
CETA addresses technical barriers to trade and includes measures to facilitate and simplify the conformity assessment process for exporters of products between the Canadian and EU markets.
The CA Protocol lays out a process for the mutual acceptance of test results and product certifications by Canadian and EU-recognized conformity assessment bodies (CABs). For specific product categories covered by the CA Protocol, Canada and the EU have agreed to work to mutually recognize the accreditation of CABs of the other party to certify/test to their respective requirements. This will reduce costs and administrative delays for Canadian and EU companies.
SCC plays a key role in helping to implement the CA Protocol. Through SCC’s agreement with the European co-operation for Accreditation (EA), Canadian CABs will be eligible to be recognized by the EU if they are accredited by SCC. Likewise, EU CABs will also be eligible to be recognized in Canada through the EA.
The CA Protocol does not restrict Canadian and EU regulators from setting their own requirements. It simply provides a mechanism for mutual recognition of certification to certain requirements. The CA Protocol only applies to the certification of products by accredited third-party CABs. SCC and EA initiated work to implement the Protocol in 2017.
Update, March 2019
In November 2018, the EU informed Global Affairs Canada (GAC) that the European Commission (EC) is reviewing the language of the CA Protocol to determine if the authority to designate CABs in the EU rests with the European Commission (EC), or if each EU member state is individually responsible. As such, SCC is awaiting final EC recognition as an accreditation body competent to accredit to EU requirements before being able to designate CABs on behalf of the government of Canada. There is no timeline for this review, but it has delayed the work that SCC and EA are doing to mutually recognize CABs in Canada and the EU. The EU has indicated to Canada that it remains committed to the prompt implementation of the Protocol as soon as possible.
Despite this delay, SCC and EA continue our work in implementing the CA Protocol. Our goal is to be ready to implement mutual recognition in as many areas as possible once the EC grants recognition to SCC. Additionally, SCC and EA are exploring the feasibility of potential temporary solutions to mitigate the impact of this delay.
- Summary of the Information Session on the CA Protocol of CETA
- Summary of the 2nd Information Session on the CA Protocol of CETA
For more information on the CA Protocol, please contact CETAinfo@scc.ca.
For general inquiries and additional information on the implementation of CETA, please visit the Global Affairs Canada web page about CETA.