COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION
Luxemburg, 23rd June 2008
Council adopted rules to improve free movement of goods in the EU
The Council adopted today a legislation package intended to facilitate free movement of goods within the Single European Market by removing the remaining barriers to trade and by increasing competitiveness and safety of consumers.
The package consists of 3 legal instruments relating to “mutual recognition” principle and “new approach” system.
A Regulation stipulates procedures pertaining to the implementation of certain technical regulations for products that are officially placed on the market of another Member State (3613/08) and facilitates the access to free trade by clearly outlining some of the potential obstacles to implementation of “mutual recognition” principle in a non-harmonised area of goods.
Mutual recognition principle prescribes that EU countries of destination cannot, in their territory, impose a ban on the sale of products that are legally sold on the markets of other EU countries, but not subjected to harmonisation process in the Community.
The Regulation prescribes that the procedure to be observed by competent authorities when wishing to impose a national technical regulation (i.e. in cases where mutual recognition is not implemented) shall be laid down therein.
It also transfers “burden of proof” from an entrepreneur onto the administration which makes it more difficult for a Member State to place the products that had already been accepted in another Member State on the market.
Moreover, it allows for the establishment of contact points for products in the Member States.
This Regulation repeals Council Decision 3052/95/EC establishing a procedure of information exchange between Member States on national measures which are based on the principle of free circulation of goods within the Community.
Revision of New Approach system
- A regulation setting out the requirements for accreditation, market surveillance and controls of products entering the Community market (3614/08); and
- Decision setting out a common framework for placing the products on the market (3615/08).
These are the instruments for the revision, updating, and strengthening the New Approach system that was established in 1985. This New Approach sets a system enabling the Commission to compel European organisations for standardisation to produce technical specifications to be harmonised with the necessary product safety level.
The Regulation is specifically intended to strengthen market surveillance mechanisms and to ensure that products circulating throughout the EU can afford high level of protection of public interests.
A decision to place the products on the market provides an instrument for future technical harmonisation by enabling sectoral adjustments. These novelties will also increase the clarity of EC marking and conformity of products.
Newly adopted EU Regulation – on the movement of goods on the single market, accreditation and market surveillance