EC to alter construction law

The European Commission (EC) is proposing to replace the Construction Products Directive 89/106/EEC with updated regulations.

The European Commission (EC) is proposing to replace the Construction Products Directive 89/106/EEC with updated regulations.

The aim is to improve the availability and understanding of construction products used in the European Economic Area.

Proposals include the introduction of a common technical language by which all manufacturers must declare the performance characteristics of their products. Based on harmonised European standards, this would be linked to firms' ability to use the CE mark.

The EC reasons that by ensuring all users such as engineers and consultants have full and reliable information about products, they will be better able to fulfil their duties to ensure the safety of construction works in accordance with national laws.

The proposal aims to increase the simplification, clarification and credibility of the system.

EC member states would remain responsible for safety issues within their individual countries, such as design and build standards of projects.

The EU would gain responsibility for the creation of an internal market for construction products that would enable free trade throughout the member countries.

To date, the directive has resulted in the introduction of more than 300 harmonised European product standards (hENs); more than 20 guidelines for European technical approvals (ETAGs); and more than 1,100 ETAs supported by more than 50 Commission Decisions on the applicable systems for conformity assessments or classifications for the reaction to fire.

The EC has launched a consultation of interested stakeholders to discuss the proposal. For more details see: http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/construction/cpdrevision/cpd_revision_intro_en.htm.

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