World Accreditation Day: Fostering trust in global trade

In a volatile and changing business environment, accreditation is an increasingly central support to build trust in global trade.

Global trade continues to expand despite regulatory and geopolitical obstacles as well as higher expectations from consumers. Allied to this are concerns related to cybersecurity, AI, data protection, fraud and product authenticity and consumer consciousness of the importance of sustainability, safety, health and ethics.

As a consequence, businesses are being forced to improve qualification and management of their supply chains. Events such as the pandemic, armed conflicts and regulatory fragmentation has impacted shipping and access to goods and commodities. Businesses have been forced to become more resilient and agile as they face raw material shortages, inflationary pressures, and shifts in supply chains. The ability to quality assure existing and new suppliers have also been impacted by restrictions on movement.

Standards and certification have for long been at the core of global trade, providing common standards for quality and safety and reducing transaction costs. Conformity assessments provide a passport of trust that enables goods and services to circulate between economies without the need for additional testing, inspection, certification, validation or verification in the importing economy.

“When going cross borders, accreditation is essential.  Companies need to know they are working with a trusted certification body operating according to the high standards set by accreditation bodies,” says Barbara Frencia, Business Assurance CEO in DNV.

This year’s World Accreditation Day theme - Accreditation: Supporting the Future of Global Trade - highlights how accreditation and accredited conformity assessments support the ongoing global supply chain restructuring. Focus is on how accreditation helps companies seek new markets and investment opportunities, build resilient and flexible supply chains, and supports UN Sustainable Development Goal commitments.

“Assuring quality and safety to mandatory standards builds the necessary trust in and traceability of products and consequently also companies and suppliers.  Whole value chains rely on certification to enable the flow of goods and services. Accredited certification fosters vital trust,” concludes Barbara Frencia.