Margarete Schramböck, Federal Minister for Digital and Economic Affairs of Austria. Image by ABA - Invest in Austria

Margarete Schramböck, Federal Minister for Digital and Economic Affairs of Austria has said that more reliance on the principle of mutual recognition is good for manufacturers, good for traders and good for consumers. The new rules will lead to less bureaucracy, more business opportunities, a wider choice for consumers and more competitive prices.

The Austrian presidency of the Council today reached a provisional agreement with the European Parliament on measures which will facilitate the circulation of goods across the EU. The new rules improve and expand the application of the mutual recognition principle.

The draft regulation is expected to improve the application of the principle of mutual recognition in the following ways :

  • it clarifies the scope of mutual recognition. This will increase legal certainty for businesses and national authorities as to when the principle of mutual recognition can be applied;
  • it introduces a mutual recognition declaration to make it easier to demonstrate that the goods in question have already been lawfully marketed in an EU country. This is meant to enable economic operators to benefit from the use of such a declaration within the framework of assessment of goods in question;
  • it establishes a problem-solving mechanism based on the SOLVIT network. This is expected to provide practical solutions in case of disputes regarding the compatibility of an administrative decision denying or restricting market access with the principle of mutual recognition;
  • it improves administrative cooperation through Product Contact Points and enhanced recourse to IT technology. These are expected to enhance the exchange of information and trust among national authorities;
  • it provides for the possibility of EU financial support for setting up the above mechanisms established under the new rules.

After formal approval of the proposed regulation by the Parliament and the Council, the new rules will be applied twelve months after the entry into force of the regulation.