Special story

We have moved!

On 31 October, ANEC relocated its Secretariat from Avenue de Tervueren 32, 1040 Brussels to Rue d’Arlon 80, 1040 Brussels. The move not only modernises and improves our working environment, but also allows for a renewed relationship with our sister organisation, BEUC, the mainstream European consumer association, with whom we previously shared office accommodation between 1995 and 2008.

Regrettably, the latest lockdown in Brussels has prevented a traditional housewarming, but we trust a celebration may be possible, earlier rather than later, in 2021. 

new office


Lead story

New Consumer Agenda (NCA)

On 13 November 2020, the EC launched the New Consumer Agenda (NCA) – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recovery (https://bit.ly/2VOFB4x), including a press release (https://bit.ly/3lEN5S1), highlighting its priorities and actions from now until 2025.

During the summer, ANEC published a position paper (https://bit.ly/36CcSWH) on the New Consumer Agenda. We stressed the need for implementation of a new vision for consumers and consumer policy in Europe, one that brings together all relevant policies. In our view, an inclusive standardisation system, with ensured consumer participation, guarantees that standards can continue to play a key role in the new normal ahead. We are pleased to see the Agenda reflects several of these expectations.

At its meeting on 25 November, the ANEC Steering Committee held a first discussion with DG JUST on the Agenda, including the relevance of standards to its implementation.

New Consumer Agenda



Revision of the GPSD

The General Product Safety Directive (GPSD, 2001/95/EC) dates back to 2001, before an era of global online shopping and the rise of ‘smart products’. Moreover, it is inadequate in addressing use of harmful chemicals in everyday products. Noting that the New Consumer Agenda includes the revision of the GPSD, ANEC and BEUC have published a Factsheet as a summary of our expectations from the revision (https://bit.ly/33IfyAa).

We propose:

- > to make online marketplaces liable in the context of product safety;

- > to improve key safety concepts to include ‘security’;

- > to strengthen the setting of safety requirements;

- > to set detailed chemical safety criteria for consumer products.

In order to achieve these expectations are met, we propose two other Directives are revised in association with the GPSD, the E-commerce Directive and the Product Liability Directive.

Revision of the GPSD 

European Injury Database (EU-IDB)

On the occasion of International Product Safety Week (IPSW), which took place online on 9-10 November, ANEC joined forces with EuroSafe to call for a revitalisation of the European Injury Database (EU-IDB) in our common position paper, “European consumer safety needs solid injury data” (https://bit.ly/2Jy6eYE).

Every year, about 20 million unintentional injuries (“accidents”) occur at home or during leisure time activities. Products are involved in more than 50% of these injuries (about 11 million injuries annually). Targeted prevention needs data about the frequency and severity of injuries, as well as on the concerned population group and circumstances. Without reliable information on risk factors, evidence-based priorities regarding population groups, products or settings cannot be set.

At the launch of the ANEC-EuroSafe paper, Stephen Russell, ANEC Secretary-General said,

“A cost-effective solution to injury surveillance is available. The systematic collection of injury data in emergency departments of hospitals, on which EU-IDB is based, remains the most cost-efficient way to provide solid estimates of the number of patients in Europe and information to inform the standardisation process”.

In order to re-establish a reliable evidence-base for consumer safety in the Single Market, we and EuroSafe find it necessary for:

- > DG JUST to take back political responsibility for the present European injury surveillance system on products;

- > central services for the IDB database to be secured (i.e. handling of data at EU-level, the operation of the joint database, and provision of a user-friendly tool to access data);

- > the Commission, Parliament and Council to strive for a legal framework that aids Member States in collecting and sharing data on injuries involving products;

Last, but not least, in order to raise further awareness of the need for revitalisation of the European Injury Database (EU-IDB), on 6 November, we and EuroSafe launched a press release (https://bit.ly/3lBJ2WF) and infographic. 

ANEC infographic V05 WEB 1


Child Safety 

Toy Safety Campaigns

On 20 November, the occasion of the anniversary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, the OECD and the European Commission (EC) launched their yearly campaign to raise consumer awareness about a product safety issue. This year’s campaign focusses on the safety of toys sold online (https://bit.ly/2KYKA02), with tips for consumers on how to shop safely online, as well as messages to businesses and online marketplaces.

We also relaunched our Toy Safety Tips campaign on social media (https://bit.ly/33J77EE), in association with Toy Industries of Europe (TIE).

Previous EC/OECD campaigns looked at product recalls (https://bit.ly/3qpYUPv), safety of products sold online (https://bit.ly/33IzouW), furniture tip-overs (https://bit.ly/3mHeuUJ), window cord safety (https://bit.ly/36F8g20), detergent capsules (https://bit.ly/2JQG5nC) and button battery safety (https://bit.ly/2Vyo4xg). 


Buy toys from trustworthy retailers


Key standard on accessibility adopted

ANEC welcomes adoption of EN 17210 ‘Accessibility and usability of the built environment - Functional requirements’ by CEN. The new standard describes basic, minimum functional requirements & recommendations for an accessible and usable built environment, following "Design for All"/"Universal Design". The Project Team responsible for drafting the standard was led by ANEC expert, Monika Klenovec.

The principles of the standard will facilitate equitable and safe use for a wide range of users, including persons with disabilities. Its requirements and recommendations are applicable across the spectrum of the built environment. These requirements and recommendations are relevant to the design, construction, refurbishment or adaptation, and maintenance of built environments, including outdoor pedestrian and urban areas.

ANEC Accessibility WG meets

The ANEC Accessibility WG held its annual meeting online on 19-20 November 2020. The meeting saw a very significant participation of members and experts. Discussions focussed on how to mainstream accessibility in, and through, standardisation.

We must thank our members and experts for their extremely constructive contributions.

accessibility meeting


Implementing the CEAP

On 3-4 November, ANEC joined the Circular Economy Stakeholder Conference 2020 which addressed the main elements of the Circular Economy Action Plan (CEAP). After the meeting, ANEC and BEUC submitted a preliminary contribution to the sustainable products initiative (https://bit.ly/3g7ORKa).

The meeting focused on making sustainable products the norm, with parallel sessions held on various actions of the CEAP. Both EC and stakeholders confirmed their commitment to prioritise the phasing out of hazardous chemicals in products to achieve truly sustainable products. In reply to a question posed by ANEC to the panel on sustainable products, the Green Deal adviser from the cabinet of President von der Leyen stressed that the chemicals strategy emphasises the phasing out of chemicals in products. 

sustainable product 

Traffic & Mobility

Smart Mobility & Sustainable Transport PT

ANEC is preparing for the release of the EC’s ‘Strategy for sustainable and smart mobility’, expected on 9 December. Our new Project Team on Smart Mobility & Sustainable Transport has met twice to discuss personal mobility devices and alternative fuels infrastructure, both key in fulfilling the objectives of the Green Deal. Standards can help achieve the policy goals outlined in the Green Deal in various ways, such as to clarify commonly accepted definitions, provide methods for measuring and testing, as well as ensuring open markets for the safe use of new technologies.

Our approach is to prioritise user and consumer safety and needs where accessibility and usability of the transport infrastructure must be guaranteed. In doing so, this supports the transition to sustainable and safe connected, cooperative and automated (CCAM) vehicle concepts, and personal micro-mobility options such as e-scooters, e-bikes and cargo bikes, covering door-to-door mobility.

The PT agreed on the scope of work for its first position paper, namely to cover the physical safety of vehicles, infrastructure, data communication and cybersecurity. 

Please contact Alana Valero (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) if you are interested in joining the PT. 


call for experts


Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS)

ANEC supports the revision of the ITS Directive and the EC’s wish to accelerate deployment of ITS with the aim to have more efficient, safer, and more sustainable mobility.

We believe ITS should pay special attention to new means of mobility, modes and services (including personal mobility devices/options). The harmonisation of data formats is needed, allowing infrastructure and means of road transport to communicate while speaking the same language and thus improving safety and environment.

As ITS will handle personal data of travellers, consumers should actively give their consent (opt-in) and systems should be designed for this. Hence, consumers need to be recognised as stakeholders in the process.



Season's Greetings


seasons greetings

                  With thanks to Canopée Studio (www.canopee.studio) for the design


      Christmas Holly IconMay we wish a happy and safe holiday season to all of our
                  members, experts, 
partners and stakeholders.Christmas Holly Icon



List of comments 2020

List of meetings 2020


For comments or if you wish to write an article for the ANEC Newsletter, please contact: Marijana ANTAROROVA (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).