Extending the recognition of CE marking and the implementation of the UKCA mark
On the 1st of August, 2023, the UK government announced plans to extend recognition of CE marking ‘indefinitely’ beyond the upcoming December 2024 deadline previously announced.
“The government intends to extend recognition of the CE marking for placing most goods on the market in Great Britain indefinitely, beyond December 2024. These updates apply to the 18 regulations that fall under the Department for Business and Trade (DBT).”
In simple terms, the changes allow goods to be placed onto the GB market using the CE mark until the end of 2024, an extension of a further two years. There are some other changes that have been announced, and these are detailed below.
The headlines are as follows:
- 1. The CE mark will continue to be recognised for goods placed onto the GB market until the end of 2024 (11 pm on the 31st of December 2024)
- 2. Manufacturers can choose to use either a UKCA mark or a CE mark for goods placed on the GB market until the end of 2024.
The UKCA mark is still a valid and accepted way to demonstrate product conformity to UK Legislation and the relevant Regulations and can continue to be placed onto goods.
- 3. After the 31st of December 2024, the UKCA mark will be mandatory, and the CE mark will cease to be recognised.
The UKCA mark can be on an accompanying document or on the goods as a label until the 31st of December, 2027. After the 31st of December 2027, the UKCA mark must be permanently attached to the goods.
- 4. For goods placed on the GB market, importer details can be included on an accompanying document until the 31st of December, 2027. After the 31st of December 2027, Importer details must be permanently attached to the goods.
It is important to note that this only extension applies to goods from EEA countries (and, in some cases, Switzerland). For goods placed onto the GB market from outside of the EEA (and Switzerland), the importer’s details should continue to be placed onto the goods.
- 5. After the 31st of December 2027, the UKCA mark must be permanently attached to the goods
- 6. The changes do not change the requirement for products to meet the essential requirements of the relevant EU Legislation if CE marking is used or UK Regulations where a UKCA mark is used.
- 7. A relevant Declaration of Conformity containing the correct and appropriate information must still be available
- 8. Manufacturers must still maintain a Technical File that contains the information required to evidence compliance with the information shown in the Declaration of Conformity
- 9. The roles of Economic Operators, such as manufacturers, importers or authorised representatives, are unchanged
- 10. For goods that require third-party conformity assessment:
- a. If CE conformity assessment has been undertaken by the 31st of December 2024, this can be used as a basis for UKCA marking. The UKCA mark can be placed onto the goods and the goods placed onto the GB market until the validity of the certificate expires or for three years (up to the 31st of December 2027)
- b. For conformity assessment that is undertaken on or after the 1st of January 2025, a UK Approved Body must be used to obtain a UKCA mark
- 11. Special rules continue to apply to medical devices
- 12. Under the terms of the Protocol, Northern Ireland will continue to recognise the CE marking for goods placed on the market in Northern Ireland. They will need to use the UKNI marking if they use a UK Conformity Assessment Body to test their products.
- 13. The changes only apply to goods placed on the GB market. The UK is a third-country from the point of placing products onto the EU market, and the requirements for technical and administrative compliance and the roles of economic operators remain unchanged.
Guidance for products that fall under the Equipment and Protective Systems Intended for Use in Potentially Explosive Atmospheres Regulations 2016
There are specific rules surrounding products that fall under the Equipment and Protective Systems Intended for Use in Potentially Explosive Atmospheres Regulations 2016 and are intended to be placed on the UK market.
Our colleagues at Eurofins E&E CML have updated their guidance which can be found here.
What to do next….
We understand that for many of our customers, this change will come as a surprise, as many of you have already been working towards or completed UKCA marking your products, updating your documentation and labelling, and ensuring that your products meet the latest versions of relevant standards.
We encourage you to use this additional time to continue working towards UKCA marking as well as ensuring that your current products are compliant – you should be able to provide the correct documentation to support whatever compliance marking you choose to use.
These changes apply to the GB market only – the UK is still a third country as far as the EU is concerned. The additional requirements placed upon manufacturers and importers looking to place products onto the EU market since the UK left the EU are still in place. In many cases, increased market surveillance within the EU makes demonstrating product compliance as crucial as ever, if not more so.
It’s also important to note that the labelling easement that was announced in June, and which continues albeit extended in this new announcement, only applies to products placed on the GB market from an EEA country (plus Switzerland). If you are importing products from outside the EEA (or Switzerland), the labelling requirements for importer details are in place now.
Our Compliance Support service is here to help you through this process, regardless of whether you continue to work towards UKCA marking or take time to review and assess your existing product compliance.
To find out more about our Compliance Support Service, click here.