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The European Commission’s new initiative on market surveillance – the Goods Package – is not appropriate for construction products, and they should be kept out of the measures, according to FIEC (the European Construction Industry Federation).

As the European Parliament considers amendments to the proposals for compliance and enforcement on the one hand, and mutual recognition on the other, FIEC president Kjetil Tonning said, “Market surveillance in the EU needs improving, and the problems of counterfeiting and sub-standard products in general need to be addressed. We welcome the Goods Package as a way of improving the situation.

“However, this package is not appropriate for construction products, which already have specific legislative measures. Instead, the existing measures should be reinforced, and in the meantime, we call for construction products to be excluded from the scope of the package.”

FIEC is proposing specific amendments and is asking for recognition of construction’s special needs.

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Kjetil Tonning

It feels that construction materials differ from many other products, as they are frequently installed by professionals, and are not usually intended to be used as standalone products.

Tonning said, “Market surveillance of the materials we use every day in the industry needs to be undertaken by specialists. Moreover, such products are covered by the Construction Products Regulation (CPR), and although we strongly believe that better control is required, this should be done under the existing legal framework.”

He added, “Furthermore, the CPR requires a Declaration of Performance from the manufacturer and provides for other measures in the case of non-harmonised products.”

He claimed that the proposed regulations, therefore, would confuse end users, who he said were already trying to deal with a complicated system of information provision, “some of which is mandatory, some voluntary – with both EU and national aspects – in order to be sure that they are using the right products”.

Tonning said, “With this in mind, we cannot accept the Goods Package for construction products.”

The Goods Package proposal was welcomed by CECE (the Committee for European Construction Equipment).

At the Intermat show in Paris, France, after an inspection of construction machinery, CECE president Enrico Prandini said there were too many instances of non-compliance.

“Market surveillance is an essential pillar of the internal market – without appropriate controls on compliance, requirements are of very little value.”

He went on to say that CECE, therefore, welcomed the EU Commission’s Goods Package proposal to reinforce trust in the Single Market.

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