Brexit and EU rules in the field of industrial products – be prepared !

On 22nd January, the European Commission published a notice for stakeholders and economic operators about the legal repercussions, which need to be considered with the Brexit.

Subject to any transitional arrangement that may be contained in a possible withdrawal agreement, as of the withdrawal date, the EU rules in the field of non-food and non- agricultural products, whether for use by consumers or professionals no longer apply to the United Kingdom. This has, in particular, the consequences presented below for products placed on the EU-27 market as from the withdrawal date.

Identification of economic operators with the Brexit

According to Union product legislation, the importer is the economic operator established in the Union who places a product from a third country on the Union market. As from the withdrawal date, a manufacturer or importer established in the United Kingdom will no longer be considered as an economic operator established in the Union. This operator will have to comply with the specific obligations relevant to an importer (different from those of a distributor). 

In case a manufacturer has to designate an authorised representative (in specific legislation such as for marine equipment or transportable pressure equipment), the legislation requires the authorised representative to be established in the Union. Authorised representatives or responsible persons established in the United Kingdom will not, as from the withdrawal date, be recognised as authorised representatives or responsible persons for the purposes of the applicable Union product legislation.

The Commission advises that manufacturers take the necessary steps to ensure that the designated authorized representatives are established in the EU-27. 

Conformity assessment procedures and notified bodies with the Brexit

In some product areas, Union legislation requires the intervention of a qualified third party, known as Notified Body, in the conformity assessment procedure. As from the withdrawal date, UK Notified Bodies will lose their status as EU Notified Bodies and will be removed from the Commission’s information system on notified organisations.

Where economic operators hold certificates issued by a UK Notified Body prior to the withdrawal date and plan to continue placing the product concerned on the EU-27 market as from the withdrawal date, they are advised to consider either applying for a new certificate issued by an EU-27 Notified Body or arranging for a transfer.

Import/export licences with the Brexit

With the Brexit, where the import/export of goods is subject to a licensing requirement under Union law, shipments from the EU-27 to the United Kingdom and vice versa will require such an import/export licence. Moreover, import/export licences issued by the United Kingdom as an EU Member State on the basis of Union law are no long valid for shipments to the EU-27 from third countries or vice versa.

Goods concerned by import/export licences are dual-use goods, firearms and ammunition, military technology and equipment.

Indicative list of products, which could be concerned by the new rules after the Brexit (sorry…it is big)

The Commission’s notice applies primarily to:

•       Products within the scope of Directive 2001/95/EC on general product safety (OJ L 11, 15.1.2002, p. 4)

•       The restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment (Directive 2011/65/EU, OJ L 174, 1.7.2011, p. 88) and Directive 2012/19/EU on waste electrical and electronic equipment (OJ L 197, 24.7.2012, p. 38)

•       Batteries and waste batteries (Directive 2006/66/EC, OJ L 266, 26.9.2006, p. 1)

•       Appliances burning gaseous fuels (Directive 2009/142/EC, OJ L 330, 16.12.2009, p. 10, to be replaced as of 21 April 2018 by Regulation (EU) 2016/426, OJ L 81, 31.3.2016, p. 99)

•       Ecodesign requirements for energy-related products (Directive 2009/125/EC, OJ L 285, 31.10.2009, p. 10, and all implementing Regulations for specific product groups that have been adopted under this Framework Directive)

•       Simple pressure vessels (Directive 2014/29/EU, OJ L 96, 29.3.2014, p. 45)

•       Toys’ safety (Directive 2009/48/EC, OJ L 170, 30.6.2009, p. 1)

•       Electrical equipment designed for use within certain voltage limits (Directive 2014/35/EU, OJ L 96, 29.3.2014, p. 357)

•       Machinery (Directive 2006/42/EC, OJ L 157, 9.6.2006, p. 24)

•       Electromagnetic compatibility (Directive 2014/30/EU, OJ L 96, 29.3.2014, p. 79)

•       Measuring instruments (Directive 2014/32/EU, OJ L 96, 29.3.2014, p. 149)

•       Non-automatic weighing instruments (Directive 2014/31/EU, OJ L 96, 29.3.2014, p. 107)

•       Cableway installations designed to carry persons (Directive 2000/9/EC, OJ L 106, 3.5.2000, p. 21, to be replaced as of 21 April 2018 by Regulation (EU) 2016/424, OJ L 81, 31.3.2016, p. 1)

•       Radio equipment (Directive 2014/53/EU, OJ L 153, 22.5.2014, p. 62)

•       Medical devices and Active implantable medical devices (Directives 93/42/EEC, OJ L 169, 12.7.1993, p. 1, and 90/385/EEC, OJ L 189, 20.7.1990, p. 17, to be replaced as of 26 May 2020 by Regulation (EU) 2017/745, OJ L 117, 5.5.2017, p. 1, with the exception of the provisions of Directives 93/42/EEC and 90/385/EEC listed in Article 122 of Regulation 2017/45, for which a later date of repeal is provided for)

•       In vitro diagnostic medical devices (Directive 98/79/EC, OJ L 331, 7.12.1998, to be replaced as of 26 May 2022 by Regulation (EU) 2017/746, OJ L 117, 5.5.2017 p. 176, with the exception of the provisions of Directive 98/79/EC listed in Article 112 of Regulation 2017/46, for which a later date of repeal is provided for)

•       Cosmetics (Regulation (EC) 1223/2009, OJ L 342, 22.12.2009, p. 59)

•       Pressure equipment (Directive 2014/68/EU, OJ L 189, 27.6.2014, p. 164)

•       Transportable Pressure equipment (Directive 2010/35/EU, OJ L 165, 30.6.2010, p. 1)

•       Aerosol Dispensers (Directive 75/324/EEC, OJ L 147, 9.6.1975, p. 40)

•       Lifts and safety components for lifts (Directive 2014/33/EU, OJ L 96, 29.3.2014, p. 251)

•       Recreational craft and personal watercraft (Directive 2013/53/EU OJ L 354, 28.12.2013, p. 90)

•       Equipment and protective systems intended for use in potentially explosive atmospheres (Directive 2014/34/EU, OJ L 96, 29.3.2014, p. 309)

•       Explosives for civil uses (Directive 2014/28/EU, OJ L 96, 29.3.2014, p. 1)

•       Construction products (Regulation (EU) No 305/2011, OJ L 88, 4.4.2011, p. 5)

•       Pyrotechnics (Directive 2013/29/EU, OJ L 178, 28.6.2013, p. 27)

•       Regulation on the Labelling of Tyres (Regulation (EC) No 1222/2009, OJ L 342, 22.12.2009, p. 46)

•       Personal protective equipment (Directive 89/686/EEC, OJ L 399, 30.12.1989, p. 18, to be replaced as of 21 April 2018 by Regulation (EU) 2016/425, OJ L 81, 31.3.2016, p. 51)

•       Marine equipment (Directive 2014/90/EU, OJ L 257, 28.8.2014, p. 146)

•       Noise emission in the environment by equipment for use outdoors (Directive 2000/14/EC, OJ L 162, 3.7.2000, p. 1)

•       Energy labelling (Regulation (EU) No 2017/1369, OJ L 198, 28.7.2017, p. 1, and all delegated Regulations for specific product groups that have been adopted under this Framework Regulation and those adopted under Directive 2010/30/EU, OJ L 153, 18.6.2010, p. 1, the predecessor of Regulation 2017/1369).

•       Regulation on textile fibre names and related labelling and marking of textile products (Regulation (EU) No 1007/2011, OJ L 272, 18.10.2011, p. 1)

•       Directive relating to labelling of the materials used in the main components of footwear (Directive 94/11/EC, OJ L 100, 19.4.1994, p. 37)

•       Metrology – (Directive 2011/17/EU OJ L 71, 18.3.2011, p. 1 – Repeal of several directives – transition till 2025)

•       Bottles as measuring containers (Directive 75/107/EEC, OJ L 42, 15.2.1975, p. 14)

•       Making up of pre-packaged products (Directive 76/211/EEC, OJ L 46, 21.2.1976, p. 1)

•       Hot-water boilers fired with liquid or gaseous fuels (Directive 92/42/EEC, OJ L 167, 22.6.1992, p. 17. The Directive was repealed by Commission Regulation (EU) No 813/2013 (OJ L 239, 6.9.2013, p. 136) implementing Directive 2009/125/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council with regard to ecodesign requirements for space heaters and combination heaters, except for Articles 7(2) and 8 thereof and Annexes III to V thereto)

•       Interoperability of the rail system within the European Union (Directive 2008/57/EC, OJ L 191, 18.7.2008, p. 1, to be replaced as of 16 June 2020 by Regulation (EU) 2016/797, OJ L 138, 26.5.2016, p. 44)

•       Interoperability of Electronic Road Toll Systems (Decision 2009/750/EC implementing Directive 2004/52/EC, OJ L 268, 13.10.2009, p. 11)

•       Tachographs in road transport (Regulation (EU) No 165/2014, OJ L 60, 28.2.2014, p. 1)

•       Interoperability of the European Air Traffic Management network (Regulation (EC) No 552/2004, OJ L 96, 31.3.2004, p. 26)

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