Single Market: new rules to ensure safe and compliant products on the EU market

As of July 16, 2021, the EU Market Surveillance and Compliance Regulation becomes fully applicable. The new rules aims to ensure that products placed on the EU market comply with relevant EU legislation and meet public health and safety requirements. The legislation is key to ensuring a well-functioning Single Market and helps to put into place a better structure for checks on products exchanged on the EU market by improving cooperation among national authorities and customs officers.  

Commissioner Thierry Breton, responsible for the Internal Market, said: “With growing online purchases and complexity of our supply chains, it is essential we ensure that all products on our Internal Market are safe and comply with EU legislation. This regulation will help to protect consumers and businesses from unsafe products and improve cooperation of national authorities and customs officers to prevent these from entering the Internal Market.” The Regulation, proposed by the Commission in June 2019, will now apply to a wide array of products covered by 73 pieces of EU legislation, from toys, electronics to cars.

To boost businesses’ compliance with these rules, the Regulation will help to provide free of charge information on product rules to businesses via the Your Europe portal and Product contact points. The new rules will also better specify the powers of Market Surveillance authorities, giving them powers to perform on-site inspections and undertake undercover purchasing of products.

The modernised framework for market surveillance will also help address the rising challenges of e-commerce and new supply chains, by ensuring that certain categories of products can only be placed on the EU market if an economic operator is present in the EU as interlocutor for authorities. To help businesses adjust to these requirements, the Commission has already issued dedicated Guidelines in March 2021.

In addition, the regulation will also help to strengthen cooperation between enforcement and especially customs authorities, in order to ensure more effective controls of products entering the EU market at its borders. The groundwork for improved cooperation among market surveillance authorities, the Commission and stakeholders was laid down through the establishment of the European Product Compliance Network earlier in January this year. More about market surveillance, here.

www.ec.europa.eu