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The Market Surveillance Observatory

UNE underlines the importance of complying with standards and legislation in the new Market Surveillance Observatory document


The Spanish Association for Standardization (UNE) has underlined the importance of complying with technical standards and legislation to prevent the marketing of unsafe products and services, which damage the economy, harm consumers and entail unfair competition for companies that do comply with them.

All is revealed in the new document published by UNE Market Surveillance Observatory, in which it highlights the advantages of complying with technical standards; provides credibility in the markets, boosts industrial activity and is a guarantee to consumers.

UNE explains various real cases and studies on the impact of conforming (that comply) and non-conforming (that do not comply) product declarations.

In the study, UNE warns about economic and labour losses for the economy and society arising from non-compliance with standards and legislation, as well as a loss of competitiveness and the development of a parallel unfair economy.

The Association has recently launched the Market Surveillance Observatory (OVM) to ensure compliance with standards and legislation and strengthen public-private partnership between public administrations and companies, within the framework of the new European Regulation (EU) 2019/1020 on Market Surveillance and Compliance of Products. This aims to improve the functioning of the internal market by strengthening market surveillance and helping to increase consumer confidence. A novel aspect of the initiative is the creation of a framework for public-private cooperation between Market Surveillance Authorities and organizations representing economic operators.

The UNE Market Surveillance Observatory already includes more than 30 leading business organizations, members of UNE and the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation.

The Spanish standardisation body is itself a successful example of a public-private partnership, made up of 140 relevant national sector associations, many of the country's elite companies and various governments and local authorities. UNE comprises over 500 members representing practically the whole of Spain's industrial network.

The UNE Observatory, which is aimed at governments and local authorities, distribution (including online platforms) and consumers, seeks to bring together the interests of all parties under a joint framework and to become an ideal platform for dialogue, debate and agreements.

The Observatory aims to address the development of reference documents that serve as a basis for these actions to meet the necessary requirements of objectivity, independence and impartiality.

The Market Surveillance covers all economic sectors, with a horizontal approach that applies to all products and covers general aspects such as e-commerce and environmental aspects, and three sectors with a vertical focus:

  • Products for children. Its scope covers products aimed at children (toys, fashion, childcare, school materials, accessories, leisure and sport).
  • Industrial household consumer products. These are other products that can be purchased by consumers for non-professional use (textiles, detergents, paints, inks, cosmetics, furniture, etc.).
  • Industrial products for professional use. It covers electrical and construction products (electrical, lighting, electrotechnical and general building materials).