Market Surveillance is a key element of a fair and efficient single market. Its role is to ensure that products placed on the community market comply with EU regulations and do not pose any safety or environmental threats for users and the public at large.
This should ensure a level playing field and fair competition within 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)
However, there continues to be evidence of illegal pump imports entering the UK from other countries (particularly Asia) that do not meet the strict demands of the EU Energy Related Products Directive (ErP Directive).
As such, the BPMA continues to press the National Measurement Regulatory Office (NMRO), in their role as UK Market Surveillance Authority, to take all appropriate action to ensure that such illegal pumps are removed from the market, and that all future imports are curtailed with immediate effect.
On 7th December last year, BPMA representatives again met with NMRO Executives at their headquarters in London and again conveyed its Members’ frustration that to-date no discernible progress has been made. This is despite numerous previous meetings between the two organisations, and several written assurances that market surveillance is regarded as an important issue.
During this meeting, the NMRO confirmed that several ‘suspect’ circulator pumps had now been purchased in order to be tested, although no information could be given as the source of these pumps, as this activity was another department’s responsibility. The results of the testing were initially due to be published early in 2017 but unfortunately it now looks more likely to be May 2017.
One of the key concerns raised by the BPMA is that Circulator Pumps were the first to be regulated under the ErP Directive, with many other and far more complicated pumps and pump sets to follow. It is therefore of imperative that the correct procedures are put in place now, to ensure effective surveillance across the full breadth of regulated products. The fear being that with Brexit on the horizon, the UK could become the dumping ground for cheap, non-compliant and potentially dangerous pumps.
Following this meeting, a full written appraisal was sent to Mark Prisk MP, who in his capacity of the Prime Minister’s Trade & Investment Envoy, Nordic & Baltic Nations, had previously been advised of this matter by both the BPMA and its member company, Grundfos Pumps.
As a result, Mark has in turn communicated the importance of this issue directly to The Rt Hon Greg Clark MP, Secretary of State, Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whose intervention is to be welcomed.
The BPMA will shortly be following up on this communication to the Secretary of State, in the hope that all appropriate parties can put in place the means by which to tackle any breach in these important regulations.