Technical Harmonisation

The Convention has developed detailed technical standards on the assay and marking of precious metal articles, but these are only recognised by the Convention’s Contracting States. The aim is that these standards become proper international standards. Other bodies such as ISO and CIBJO are also active in the field and without a closer co-operation, there is a risk that alternative standards are developed. 

The Convention has been pioneer in many areas related to the control and marking of precious metals.  It has developed the only existing international control mark, the Common Control Mark (CCM).  It has set standards in many critical areas such as prohibiting negative tolerance and sub-standard articles.  It has developed detailed guidelines on sampling, which are the ultimate reference for most laboratories and Assay Offices around the world.  The Convention has also issued Guidelines on XRF testing and issued a glossary on technical terms. 

The Standing Technical Group (STG) has been at the forefront of many of the recent developments and guidelines.  It has notably developed Guidelines for Round Robins, the interlaboratory proficiency testing scheme on precious metals, which the STG is running. 

For many years already, the Convention has been the only international benchmark in the field of precious metal control. The challenge for the years to come is for the Convention to become the ultimate reference for the technical harmonisation of precious metals articles. This is the reason why the Convention aims now at “leading the international development of harmonised standards and good practices for the control and marking of articles of precious metals”.