Product Compliance in the UK - What You Need to Know
As part of the Brexit process, new product compliance regulation is coming into effect in the UK. The main change is that the new UKCA marking will replace the CE marking. Unlock EMEA provides you with an overview of the change and what it means for international businesses selling in the UK.
What is the UKCA marking?
The UKCA (UK Conformity Assessed) marking is the successor to the CE marking following the UK’s exit from the EU. Like the CE marking, it is a symbol that manufacturers must place on certain products. The UCKA marking allows the manufacturer to confirm that their product meets relevant UK regulation.
Before the manufacturer can place the marking on a product, they must assess it. The process for assessment is almost identical to the CE marking assessment process. Likewise it can usually be performed by the manufacturer. Once complete, the manufacturer drafts a declaration of conformity and places the UKCA marking on their product
What is the purpose of the UKCA marking?
As the successor to the CE marking, the UKCA marking serves the same function. It serves as a ‘catch-all’ symbol for products that meet UK regulation standards. For this reason it is an offence to place the UKCA marking on a non-compliant product. The marking is only necessary for certain product categories though.
Which products require the UKCA marking?
Products that previously required the CE marking will require the UKCA marking when the changes enter effect. The most common are low voltage electrical equipment and electronic appliances. Aerosol products will require the marking too. Previously these products required the ‘reverse epsilon’ marking.
How do the changes affect Northern Ireland?
Due to the provisions of the Brexit agreement, Northern Ireland is not subject to the same regulation as the rest of the UK. As it is aligned to the European single market, goods sold in Northern Ireland will still require the CE marking. For specific information about Northern Ireland, visit the UK government website.
When do the changes take effect?
The UKCA marking came into effect on 1 January 2021. In recognition of the scope of the change, the UK government has allowed a period of adjustment. Until 1 January 2023, the UK will accept the CE marking as a valid alternative to the UKCA marking. From this date, it will no longer be accepted. You should be aware that the UKCA marking is not an acceptable alternative to the CE marking within the EU.
Where can I find additional information?
As part of the change, the UK government has made information available on their website. If you would like further information about product compliance in the UK and the EU, contact Unlock EMEA.