ONLINE DEBATE | Sewing up the holes in Europe’s product safety net

This is the fourth episode of the #ConsumerDebates that BEUC organises to discuss ongoing and upcoming policy developments.

About this event:

Consumers expect products to be safe: no matter what they buy, whether they do so online or offline, and whatever the price.

The EU has adopted several laws that require producers to only place safe products on its market. An important one is the General Product Safety Directive – GPSD for short. It sets requirements for products that do not benefit from sector-specific safety laws.

And yet dangerous and other non-compliant products – from toxic jewellery to hackable security cameras – on the European market. Our event will focus on one source of the problem: outdated legislation. The GPSD dates back to 2001: It simply does not capture today’s reality where we shop online and are able to buy a wide variety of ‘smart’ products.

In policy terms, there are serious legal loopholes and a lack of enforcement of existing rules to keep consumers safe. The European Commission’s new consumer strategy and a recent European Parliament report underline this perspective.

Join MEP Maria-Manuel Leitão-Marques and BEUC, The European Consumer Organisation, to discuss the upcoming review of the EU’s main product safety law – a process expected to start this year.

When? 25 February 2021 | 10:00-11:30 (CET) | online

Speakers include:

Jack Parrock will moderate the debate. Speakers include:

  • Maria-Manuel Leitão-Marques, Member of the European Parliament
  • Pinuccia Contino, European Commission (DG Justice)
  • Johannes Kröhnert, TÜV-Verband (German Association of Technical Inspection Agencies)
  • Stephen Russell, ANEC – The consumer voice in standardisation
  • Maarten De Backer, Test Aankoop/Test Achats (Belgian consumer organisation)
  • Monique Goyens, BEUC
  • Ilya Bruggeman, Eurocommerce
  • Sara Gouveia, Portuguese Permanent Representation to the European Union

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Programme

Introduction by moderator Jack Parrock

Setting the scene by Monique Goyens, Director General, BEUC

Presentation of European Parliament own-initiative report on product safety by Maria-Manuel Leitão-Marques, MEP (Socialists and Democrats Group)

How to improve product safety on online marketplaces?
 

  • Maarten De Backer, Project Officer: Consumer Electronics & Telecom, Test Aankoop/Test Achats
  • Ilya Bruggeman, Head, Digital, Single Market, & Consumer Policy, Eurocommerce

Question and answer session

How to include connected products in the future General Product Safety Directive?
 

  • Johannes Kröhnert, Director Brussels Office, TÜV-Verband (German Association of Technical Inspection Agencies)
  • Stephen Russell, Secretary-General, ANEC – The consumer voice in standardisation

What are the plans of the European Commission and Council, following the new Consumer Agenda?
 

  • Pinuccia Contino, Head of Unit, European Commission DG Justice
  • Sara Gouveia, Portuguese Permanent Representation to the European Union

Question and answer session

Takeaways by Monique Goyens, Director General, BEUC

Contact Card

Communications Department

The European Consumer Organisation
Europäischer Verbraucherverband
Bureau Européen des Unions de Consommateurs

Rue d'Arlon, 80 Bte 1 
B - 1040 Bruxelles

Tel: +32 2 789 24 01
E-mail:

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Communications Officer
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Director
Sylvia Maurer
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Senior Project Officer
Florence Punzano