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Mutual recognition of goods

25-04-2019

The revision of the regulation on mutual recognition of goods was announced in the 2015 Single Market Strategy. The Commission adopted its proposal in December 2017, which aimed to revise previous rules dating from 2008. This regulation aims to improve the rules governing the trade of goods in the single market. Intra-EU trade remains twice as big as extra-EU trade, and is rising constantly. This is, in large part, due to free movement of goods in the EU, which is based on either harmonised product ...

The revision of the regulation on mutual recognition of goods was announced in the 2015 Single Market Strategy. The Commission adopted its proposal in December 2017, which aimed to revise previous rules dating from 2008. This regulation aims to improve the rules governing the trade of goods in the single market. Intra-EU trade remains twice as big as extra-EU trade, and is rising constantly. This is, in large part, due to free movement of goods in the EU, which is based on either harmonised product rules at the EU level or, where there are no harmonised rules, the principle of mutual recognition under which goods lawfully marketed in one Member State may be sold in another Member State. The proposal addressed a number of shortcomings in the application of the mutual recognition principle. A provisional agreement between the co-legislators was reached on 22 November 2018. The text was adopted in plenary in February 2019. The new rules will improve collaboration among national authoritites and enhance the role of national product contact points. They will introduce a faster problem-solving procedure for disputes between companies and national authorities, as well as a new voluntary declaration to be filled in by economic operators to prove lawful marketing in an EU Member State. The new rules will apply from 19 April 2020. Fourth edition. The ‘EU Legislation in Progress’ briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure. Please note this document has been designed for on-line viewing.

Strengthening market surveillance of harmonised industrial products

28-03-2019

Harmonised products represent 69 % of the overall value of industrial products in the internal market. However, a significant part of these products does not comply with harmonised EU rules. This has negative effects on the health and safety of consumers, and on fair competition between businesses. To remedy the situation, the Commission proposed, on 19 December 2017, to strengthen market surveillance rules for non-food products harmonised by EU legislation. The proposal for a compliance and enforcement ...

Harmonised products represent 69 % of the overall value of industrial products in the internal market. However, a significant part of these products does not comply with harmonised EU rules. This has negative effects on the health and safety of consumers, and on fair competition between businesses. To remedy the situation, the Commission proposed, on 19 December 2017, to strengthen market surveillance rules for non-food products harmonised by EU legislation. The proposal for a compliance and enforcement regulation would increase EU-level coordination of market surveillance, clarify the procedures for the mutual assistance mechanism, and require non-EU manufacturers to designate a natural or legal person responsible for compliance information. On 7 February 2019, Parliament and Council reached a provisional agreement on the proposal. Parliament is due to vote on that agreement during the April II plenary session. Fourth edition. The ‘EU Legislation in Progress’ briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure. Please note this document has been designed for on-line viewing.

Revision of the Explosives Precursors Regulation

10-07-2018

Explosives precursors can be found in various chemical products used by consumers, general professional users, and industrial users, for example, in detergents, fertilisers, special fuels, lubricants and greases, water treatment chemicals. They can be used by terrorists to produce home-made explosives (HME). In April 2018 the European Commission put forward a proposal for a new regulation, accompanied by an impact assessment (IA) and an evaluation, which have been performed at the same time. The ...

Explosives precursors can be found in various chemical products used by consumers, general professional users, and industrial users, for example, in detergents, fertilisers, special fuels, lubricants and greases, water treatment chemicals. They can be used by terrorists to produce home-made explosives (HME). In April 2018 the European Commission put forward a proposal for a new regulation, accompanied by an impact assessment (IA) and an evaluation, which have been performed at the same time. The IA has attempted to provide a rather detailed, albeit mainly qualitative, analysis of the various types of impacts, disregarding some limitations to obtain data, such as a risk of exposing vulnerabilities in Member States and of jeopardising ongoing investigations and prosecutions. The IA notes that many SMEs are not part of the EU level industry associations, which have been consulted while drafting the ex-post evaluation. A question arises if the SMEs have been targeted at the stakeholder consultation in any other way, which appears not to be the case. The public consultation took less than 12 weeks, which is not in line with the Better Regulation Guidelines.

Regulation (EC) 1107/2009 on the Placing of Plant Protection Products on the Market

24-04-2018

Regulation (EC) 1107/2009 lays down the main instruments for placing effective plant protection products (using pesticide substances) on the market that are safe for humans, animals and the environment, while at the same time ensuring effective functioning of the internal market and improved agricultural production. This European Implementation Assessment found that the above objectives, while largely relevant to real needs, are not being achieved in practice. In particular, implementation of the ...

Regulation (EC) 1107/2009 lays down the main instruments for placing effective plant protection products (using pesticide substances) on the market that are safe for humans, animals and the environment, while at the same time ensuring effective functioning of the internal market and improved agricultural production. This European Implementation Assessment found that the above objectives, while largely relevant to real needs, are not being achieved in practice. In particular, implementation of the main instruments of the regulation – substance approval, plant protection products authorisation and enforcement of the regulatory decisions taken in the frame of the approvals and authorisations, is problematic, which also affect other related EU policies. Nevertheless, despite the implementation challenges observed, stakeholders – including national competent authorities, health/environment NGOs, manufacturers of substances and plant protection products and their users (farmers) – agree that the EU is the appropriate level at which regulatory action in the field of pesticides (used in plant protection products) should continue to take place.

Autor externo

Annex I written by Florent PELSY and Lise OULÈS from Milieu Ltd (Belgium) and Evelyn UNDERWOOD (Institute for European Environmental Policy, IEEP). Annex II written by Dr Emanuela BOZZINI (University of Trento, Italy). Annex III written by Dr Olivia HAMLYN (University of Leicester, United Kingdom). Annex IV written by Dr Dovilė RIMKUTĖ (University of Leiden, The Netherlands)

Homologación y vigilancia del mercado de vehículos

11-04-2018

En 2016, tras el trabajo realizado en años anteriores, aunque también como respuesta al caso Volkswagen (VW), la Comisión Europea presentó una propuesta para reforzar la homologación de tipo y la vigilancia del mercado de los vehículos de motor. En las negociaciones en primera lectura con el Consejo se alcanzó un acuerdo que debe ser sometido a votación durante la sesión plenaria de abril.

En 2016, tras el trabajo realizado en años anteriores, aunque también como respuesta al caso Volkswagen (VW), la Comisión Europea presentó una propuesta para reforzar la homologación de tipo y la vigilancia del mercado de los vehículos de motor. En las negociaciones en primera lectura con el Consejo se alcanzó un acuerdo que debe ser sometido a votación durante la sesión plenaria de abril.

Mutual recognition of goods lawfully marketed in another Member State

06-04-2018

An initial appraisal of the impact assessment accompanying the Commission proposal clearly defines the problem, as well as the general and specific objectives. Operational objectives appear to be relevant and achievable, even though they appear not to be entirely set according to the recommendations included in the better regulation toolbox. The IA presents a reasonable range of options and choses a combination of soft law measures and legislative changes (options 2 and 4). Among the measures proposed ...

An initial appraisal of the impact assessment accompanying the Commission proposal clearly defines the problem, as well as the general and specific objectives. Operational objectives appear to be relevant and achievable, even though they appear not to be entirely set according to the recommendations included in the better regulation toolbox. The IA presents a reasonable range of options and choses a combination of soft law measures and legislative changes (options 2 and 4). Among the measures proposed, the introduction of a declaration of compliance could have benefited from further substantiation of its added value. While an SME test was conducted, the analysis regarding the impact on competitiveness is largely missing. The Commission has consulted a broad range of stakeholders, whose views have been extensively analysed and illustrated. The research, analysis, and supporting evidence included or referenced in the IA provide ample and detailed insights on the different issues considered, making the overall analysis, and the assessments of the retained options, reasonably sound.

Autor externo

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Strengthening the market surveillance of products

27-03-2018

An initial appraisal of the impact assessment suggests that methodological strengths outweigh the weaknesses in this overall convincing analysis. This impact assessment is underpinned by a substantial body of work and clearly shows expertise. Nonetheless, the impact assessment could have provided more information on the links with two pending legislative procedures. Its presentation could have further facilitated consideration of the choices made by the Commission.

An initial appraisal of the impact assessment suggests that methodological strengths outweigh the weaknesses in this overall convincing analysis. This impact assessment is underpinned by a substantial body of work and clearly shows expertise. Nonetheless, the impact assessment could have provided more information on the links with two pending legislative procedures. Its presentation could have further facilitated consideration of the choices made by the Commission.

Authorisation of pesticides in the EU: With a focus on glyphosate

01-02-2018

In the European Union, plant protection products, often referred to as 'pesticides', are subject to a dual approval process: active substances are approved at European Union (EU) level, provided they meet a number of criteria. Commercial plant protection products containing one or more active substances are subsequently authorised at Member State level if they satisfy certain conditions. A controversy has emerged since 2015 over the renewal of the approval of glyphosate. One of the active substances ...

In the European Union, plant protection products, often referred to as 'pesticides', are subject to a dual approval process: active substances are approved at European Union (EU) level, provided they meet a number of criteria. Commercial plant protection products containing one or more active substances are subsequently authorised at Member State level if they satisfy certain conditions. A controversy has emerged since 2015 over the renewal of the approval of glyphosate. One of the active substances most commonly found in broad-spectrum herbicides in the world, glyphosate is mainly used in agriculture. The controversy started as a result of diverging assessments of its carcinogenicity: the International Agency for Research on Cancer, a branch of the World Health Organization, classified glyphosate as probably carcinogenic to humans, while the European Food Safety Authority found it unlikely to pose a carcinogenic hazard to humans. The European Chemicals Agency later concluded that glyphosate did not classify as a carcinogen. Several national authorities outside the EU also came to the same conclusion. The European Commission eventually renewed the approval of glyphosate for five years in December 2017. The views of stakeholders and Member States on the topic have been strongly divided. The European Parliament has called for phasing out all uses of glyphosate by the end of 2022. Parliament is expected to vote, in February 2018, on the creation of a special committee on the Union's authorisation procedure for pesticides.

Free movement of goods within the EU single market

19-01-2018

The free movement of goods is one of the four fundamental freedoms of the EU – together with services, capital and people – and a cornerstone of the single market. The rationale of an open market throughout the EU has always been to assist economic growth and competitiveness and therefore promote employment and prosperity. Legislation on the single market for goods (based mainly on Article 28 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, TFEU) aims at ensuring that products placed on the ...

The free movement of goods is one of the four fundamental freedoms of the EU – together with services, capital and people – and a cornerstone of the single market. The rationale of an open market throughout the EU has always been to assist economic growth and competitiveness and therefore promote employment and prosperity. Legislation on the single market for goods (based mainly on Article 28 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, TFEU) aims at ensuring that products placed on the EU market conform to high health, safety and environmental requirements. Once a product is sold legally in the EU, it should circulate without barriers to trade, with a minimum of administrative burden

European Commission guidelines on dual quality of branded food products

07-11-2017

On 26 September 2017, the European Commission published a notice laying out guidelines on the application of EU food and consumer protection law to issues of dual quality of food products. This legally non-binding notice follows tests in seven 'new' EU Member States that compared the composition and sensory qualities of branded products sold in those countries with some of the 'old' Member States. The tests showed that some of the products included less of the main ingredient, included ingredients ...

On 26 September 2017, the European Commission published a notice laying out guidelines on the application of EU food and consumer protection law to issues of dual quality of food products. This legally non-binding notice follows tests in seven 'new' EU Member States that compared the composition and sensory qualities of branded products sold in those countries with some of the 'old' Member States. The tests showed that some of the products included less of the main ingredient, included ingredients that were considered to be less healthy and of poorer quality, or had different taste, consistency, and other sensory characteristics. Manufacturers have questioned the reliability of the tests, claiming the differences were the result of adjusting their products to local tastes or using local ingredients and different places of manufacture. The Commission notice acknowledges that producers have a right to differentiate their products, but warns that consumers must not be misled. It clarifies the provisions of EU legislation which should enable the national authorities in Member States to act. It introduces the notion of a 'product of reference', against which consumer expectations are to be measured. Consumers need to be adequately informed if a product differs from their expectations, as when inadequate information leads them to buy a product they would not otherwise buy, such dual quality may be contrary to the Unfair Commercial Practices Directive. Members of the European Parliament have regularly spoken out against the practice of dual quality of food, with the European Parliament asking the Commission to verify the extent of the problem as early as 2013.

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