EU Standardization strategy

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The European Commission is preparing a European standardization strategy. This is of interest for KAN for a number of reasons.

European harmonised standardization plays a major role in occupational safety and health. As a rule, European legislation in the field of product safety lays down "essential requirements" for the characteristics of products to be placed on the market in the EU, which are then specified in more detail in harmonized European standards. This also covers products that are used at work. The harmonized standards are drawn up by the European standards organisations in response to a request issued by the EU Commission. Any changes in the framework conditions under which these standards are developed therefore have a direct impact on the elaboration of harmonized European standards and are thus of interest to the technical occupational safety and health and safety sector.

In addition to product standards, service standards are becoming increasingly important at European level. In the context of the work on the European standardization strategy, the European Commission is also addressing plans for the regulation of important business services in which harmonized standards could bring added value. KAN's position is that service standards are useful where they can have a benefit for the quality of the service, for example regardingn the safety of consumers. Drawing a clear distinction between the safety of consumers and the safety of the service provider is often hardly possible, however. As a result, standardization runs the risk of also addressing the health and safety of workers at work - an area which is in principle not to be governed by standards. In accordance with Article 153 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU (TFEU), the respective national OSH regulations for the protection of employees apply in this area.

KAN Feedback on the plans for a European standardization strategy (pdf, eAccessible)
Further information on KAN's work in the area of standardization policy