Legal opinion on the European standardisation system

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An expert opinion, which was drafted on behalf of the German Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy at the end of August considers and assesses the current state of the European standardisation system. It deals in particular with the implications of “James Elliott ruling”(C-613/14) of October 2016.

This ruling has significantly changed the procurement and implementation practice for European harmonised standards and standardisation mandates. It focuses on:

  • questions concerning potential liability risks in standardisation processes,
  • the coordination between the European standardisation organisations and the EU Commission prior to the publication of a harmonised standard,
  • the role of the standardisation organisations and the Member States in the EU Standardisation Committee.

The Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy has advocated a strong European system of harmonised standards for many years, where German industry and the German standardardisation organisations take on a prominent role. In publishing the legal opinion, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy is seeking to make a further contribution to the debate on the future of the European standardisation system and to accelerate European standardisation work for the purposes of bolstering European competitiveness.

Legal opinion (PDF, 963 KB) and its executive summary (Q&A) (PDF, 307 KB) in English

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