INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF ASSAY OFFICES
MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING
1.1 The Assay Offices on behalf of whom this memorandum of Understanding has been
signed declare their common intention to participate in the technical co-operation in
the International Association of Assay Offices, IAAO.
1.2 IAAO, consisting of the Heads or nominated representatives, of any authorised Assay
Office ensures that specific tasks are pursued in accordance with the objectives of the
Observer status may be given to other relevant organisations.
1.3 The IAAO shall meet at least once a year.
To maintain a high level of consumer protection and promote fair trade in precious metal
3. Objectives and Tasks
The objectives of the IAAO are :
3.1.1 To develop and maintain mutual confidence between Assay Offices.
3.1.2 To achieve and maintain the equivalence and harmonisation of precious metal
control and marking activities taking into account the relevant guidelines.
3.1.3 To identify any special features in the precious metal field which need to be
reflected in the control and marking framework.
OF ASSAY OFFICES INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION
OF ASSAY OFFICES OF ASSAY OFFICES
OF ASSAY OFFICES
3.1.4 To organise the exchange of information about precious metal control and
marking applied to national and local level.
3.1.5 To identify, and discuss, technical or administrative barriers to trade in the
field of precious metals.
3.1.6 To promote consistency of interpretation and application of normative
documents and to propose actions to facilitate implementation.
3.1.7 To identify specific technical problems which might form the subject of
3.1.8 To maintain working links with all relevant bodies and promote the
infrastructure relating to harmonisation for control and marking in the precious
3.1.9 To debate trends and establish criteria for the scope of precious metal control
and maintain channels for a continuous flow of knowledge.
Members shall perform such tasks as are decided by IAAO. These tasks may include
3.2.1 Organise inter-laboratory tests comparisons.
3.2.2 Establish relevant expert working groups in specific fields in precious metal
3.2.3 Disseminate appropriate information.
In order to achieve the objectives of IAAO each Assay Office on behalf of whom this
memorandum has been decided shall have the following rights:
4.1 To request information on the operation of the other Assay Offices.
4.2 To participate in expert working group meetings organised on behalf of the IAAO.
4.3 To participate in IAAO inter-laboratory tests and if appropriate to organise such
4.4 To request reports and results of evaluation, compliance assessment, and verification
relating to fineness and analytical methods.
Any Assay Office on behalf of whom this Memorandum has been signed commits itself to the
pursuance of the aim, objectives and tasks of IAAO. In particular the obligations are :
5.1 To make available to other participants on IAAO activities on reasonable request its
current non-confidential working documents, and details of new improvements
5.2 To keep secret and confidential any and all confidential information including reports
and test results supplied by other members and official observers (“Confidential
Information”) and will not use nor disclose the same other than for the purposes of
which such Confidential Information was provided to the members of the IAAO.
Where disclosure is made to any employee, consultant or agent, it will be done subject
to obligations equivalent to those set out in this clause 5 and each member will be
responsible to the other in respect of any disclosure or use of such secret or
Confidential Information by a person to whom disclosure is made.
These obligations of confidentiality will not extend to any matter which is in or
becomes part of the public domain otherwise than by reason of a breach of this
obligation of confidentiality, or which a member can show was in its written records
prior to the date of disclosure of the same by another member, or which it receives
from a third party independently entitled to disclose it, or which it is required by law
or regulatory authority to disclose.
The provisions of this clause 5.2 shall continue in full force and effect in the event of
termination or expiry of this Memorandum of Understanding including but not by way
of limitation where an Assay Office terminates its participation in the IAAO or ceases
to participate in the IAAO for whatever reason .
6. Validity of Memorandum of Understanding
6.1 This Memorandum of Understanding shall immediately come into authorised
operation. It shall remain open upon invitation for signature on behalf of authorised
6.2 This Memorandum of Understanding may be amended at any time by arrangement
between the Assay Offices subject to their being dissent by no more than one fourth of
6.3 If an Assay Office on behalf of whom this Memorandum of Understanding has been
signed, for any reason whatever, intends to terminate its participation in IAAO, the
Assay Offices shall notify the Chairman of IAAO of its intention not later than three
6.4 Save for the provisions of clause 5.2 which is binding, this Memorandum of
Understanding is of an exclusive recommendatory nature. It does not create any
binding or legal effects on the bodies on behalf of whom this Memorandum of
Understanding has been signed.
An annual fee is payable according to membership status. Such fees are payable by each
organisation, irrespective of the number of Assay Offices in that organisation.
The annual fee payable is to be recorded in the appropriate Summary Record.