Pumps may not be the first things you think of as a target for non-compliance issues. However, pump specialists in the UK who are part of the industry body, the BPMA, have been in active dialogue for two years about such imports with the NMRO (National Measurement Regulatory Office) who are the responsible UK Market Surveillance Authority.
Market Surveillance is a key element of a fair and efficient EU internal market as it has a role to ensure that products placed on the community market comply with EU regulations and do not pose any safety and environmental threats for users and the public at large. This should ensure a level playing field/fair competition on the market as well as safeguarding the coherence of the European regulatory framework, the consistency of which depends on effective enforcement.
Source: British Pump Manufacturers Association (BPMA)
There continues to be growing evidence of, as well as major concerns regarding, the presence of illegal pump imports entering the UK from other countries, especially Asia, that do not meet the strict demands of the ErP (the EU Energy Related Products Directive). The BPMA, supported by CEO’s from prominent member companies met with the Better Regulation Delivery Office (BRDO) during the summer in an attempt to put additional pressure on the National Measurement Regulatory Office (NMRO) in their role of UK Market Surveillance Authority to encourage them to take appropriate action.
Today however, the situation remains unchanged with no specific plan to remove illegal products from the market, as there would appear to be no cohesive methodology to clearly identify rogue imports.
There are many concerns regarding these non-compliant products being available on the UK market, as they have the capacity to cost bona fide companies millions of pounds in lost revenue, placing jobs and hard-earned reputations at risk. Another area of real concern relates to their safety as without proper testing they could present a health & safety risk.
The BPMA will however not be giving up in seeking action but will be going back to Government Ministers and MP’s, to engage them in this debate which was initially raised with them by us some eighteen months ago.
Market surveillance is an important subject and one that is likely to come under increasing scrutiny. We need a plan to protect our industries, reputations and borders from the unscrupulous exploitation of companies to whom standards are irrelevant.
The BPMA are committed to bring pressure to bear on all the agencies who are charged with maintaining standards for the greater good – we are here to stay – and will be continuing to canvas for change at every available opportunity.