November 15, 2022

UK Product Conformity - CE Mark to be recognised for next 2 years

UKCA Product Conformity delay

In 1985 the European Union introduced the requirement that certain regulated products that are destined to be sold within the European Economic Area (EEA), must have mandatory conformity marking in the form of the CE mark (The Conformitè Europëenne Mark) to demonstrate that the goods meet certain standards as set out within EU directives covering product conformity and safety.

The United Kingdom has continued to recognise the standard, however, following the Great Britain’s exit from the EU in 2020, the UK government have been keen on getting rid of the CE mark, and to replace it with a British conformity mark instead, known as The UK Conformity Assessed (UKCA) mark, despite strong support for retaining the CE standard by businesses across Great Britain.

On the 31st December 2020, the Product Safety and Metrology etc. (Amendment etc) (EU Exit) Regulation 2019 came into force, which set into law the requirement for regulated products to be marked with the new UK conformity standard mark UKCA, however, the CE mark would still be considered as conforming until 1st January 2023 whereby two years was considered adequate time for businesses to adjust.

Since the introduction of the legislation, Great Britain, along with many other countries across the globe, have experienced some tough trading conditions over the last two years from the Covid pandemic to the recent market slow down due to the Ukrainian war and resulting high energy costs. The concern for many businesses that trade affected products within the UK and Europe is that the cost of having to comply with two sets of standards will be expensive and create burdensome red tape during difficult times.

In order to bring some relief to business, the UK’s Business Secretary on Monday 14th November announced that the government have taken the decision to continue with the recognition of the CE mark for a further 24 months, providing flexibility to utilise either standard until 2025 and allowing more time for businesses to adjust and concentrate their efforts on growing their respective business and support staff.

The government have also introduced measures to reduce the costs of retesting products and labelling, these are:

  • To reduce labelling costs, businesses will be permitted to affix the UKCA marking and include importer information for products from EEA countries on an accompanying document or label until 31st December 2027.
  • It will also be permitted for conformity assessment activities for CE marking undertaken by 31 December 2024 to be used by manufacturers as the basis for the UKCA marking, until 31 December 2027

Grant Shapps MP’s announcement
List of UK Market Conformity Assessment Bodies
List of regulated products
UK government guidance for manufacturers and importers

UKCA stands for UK Conformity Assessed (UKCAmark, have you any European Union/UK Trade Compliance questions? Please don't hesitate to reach out to the team.

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