The United Nations, through the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), provides a multilateral platform that facilitates greater economic integration and cooperation among United Nations Member States and promotes sustainable development and economic prosperity.

The UNECE Working Party on Regulatory Cooperation and Standardization Policies (WP. 6) has worked in close cooperation with IECEx to develop a model for legislation in the sector of equipment used in environments with an explosive atmosphere. The Model has been adopted by the WP. 6 at its 20th session, in November 2010. In 2019 an update of the CRO was adopted (CRA: Common regulatory arrangements) with additional recommendations

  • Participation in Proficiency Testing
  • Including certified services for the Ex-field
  • Update of IEC standards
  • Support of Market Surveillance

The model provides for adequate risk mitigation, without creating excessive costs or red tape for business.

Any United Nations Member State that has no regulatory framework in the explosive equipment sector can use the model as a blueprint for legislation. If countries already have such a framework, they could consider gradually converging towards this international model. Once the model has been adopted as national legislation, the sector will operate under a single common regulatory framework in all participating countries. Official publication of the CRA (CRO) by UN 2011 and 2019 signifies the formal endorsement of the IECEx System and its Conformity Assessment Schemes covering

  • Equipment and Systems
  • Services
  • Personal Competence.

It further culminates an extensive project within the WP6 Ex Sector, in cooperation with IECEx as well as the beginning of coordinated activities between IEC, UNECEC and IECEx with the aim of ensuring that IECEx Certification provides for real economic benefits by reducing wasteful duplication of testing and assessment while preserving the necessary level of safety for the community.

Latest copy of UNECE 'A Common Regulatory Framework for Equipment Used in Environments with an Explosive Atmosphere' can be found here

Further details concerning the CRA (CRO) or work of the UNECE can be obtained from:

Tauno Kangur
Market Access Section
Economic Cooperation and Trade Division
United Nations Economic Commission for Europe

Email: tauno.kangur@un.org
Tel:   +41 (0) 22 917 14 74
Office H-WG.39
Palais des Nations
8-14 avenue de la Paix
CH - 1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland

or by contacting the IECEx Secretariat