Market Surveillance – Industry’s Support Platform
Market surveillance is a key element of a fair and efficient EU internal market:
- It ensures that products placed on the Community market comply with EU regulations and do not pose any safety and environmental threats for users and the public at large
- It ensures a level-playing field / fair competition on the market
- It safeguards the coherence of the European regulatory framework, the consistency of which depends on effective enforcement
Whereas consumer goods benefit from relatively well-organised and efficient market surveillance, capital goods suffer from a certain lack of focus. In mechanical engineering, market surveillance tends to be more reactive (e.g. following an accident) than preventive.
Mindful of the technical complexity of European Directives and Regulations, the European mechanical industry has proactively developed technical documentation to support national market surveillance authorities in their controls. Such documentation is developed by each sector independently and it felt sensible to gather existing and upcoming documents in one place in order to provide market surveillance authorities with technical assistance through a single access point.
The potential users/beneficiaries of this industry-driven web platform extends from market surveillance and customs authorities to market operators, importers, dealers and users of machinery. Guidelines for the application of CE marking on machinery have a high potential to increase user awareness which will encourage responsible purchase behaviour in capital goods markets. Moreover, manufacturers in and outside Europe will be provided with equal access to information, which will facilitate and encourage compliance with EU directives in the internal market.
The web-platform is designed to serve as a resource database of technical documents from European machinery industries. Information is available by sector and will be made available in several languages. In addition, the website is enriched with testimonials from industrialists and any other relevant information market surveillance.
European machinery industries which link up in this initiative show firm commitment to help improve market surveillance for capital goods in the EU. This voluntary initiative should be seen as complementary to governmental efforts under the EU’s New Legislative Framework for marketing of products. It testifies to the commitment of industry to help maintain high levels of health, safety and environmental standards and ensure a level playing field in the single market.