The European Commission December 19 proposed product safety legislation. It accompanied a proposal to facilitate cross-border sales, especially by small and medium companies (SMEs). The updates are a long way from adoption, needing to wind through the European Parliament and Council. A related attempt in 2013 stalled over issues like origin labeling.
The product safety element of the new package (bit.ly/2CiSw6F) has six prongs:
- Surveillance Network: The goal would be to facilitate coordination of controls and work. The idea not only is efficiency, but a "common European perspective." The EC explained, "It will allow them to pool knowledge, support each other, develop a common intelligence picture, and devise efficient methods for more targeted and risk-based controls."
- Commission Support: The EC would be better able to give administrative or financial support to nations. Targets include surveillance and testing resources. This prong also would seek to bolster systems like RAPEX and ICSMS.
- Information Sharing: The aim would be to make it easier for nations to use others' findings for enforcement.
- Transparency: The EC would seek to "more systematically publish findings," especially on market restrictions.
- Communication 1: Companies would need to designate contacts for authorities' product safety inquiries.
- Communication 2: Each member state would set up a liaison office for cross-border communication.