The Future of Quality in Product Safety and Product Compliance

The Future of Quality in Product Safety and Product Compliance

What is the role of quality assurance and quality management in product safety and product compliance? How does quality management help to make the legal responsibilities of economic operators easier? What developments can we expect in the near future? Mr. Han Zuyderwijk and Mr. Anthony Hayes will be discussing these subjects in a Livestream on Youtube and Facebook.

European Union and China to boost cooperation in custom controls and tackling counterfeit goods

Algirdas Šemeta, EU Commissioner for Taxation, Customs Union, Anti-Fraud and Audit, will open tomorrow an international conference at the Shanghai World Expo 2010 on building bridges to facilitate trade between China and the EU. The aim of the conference is to explore ways to enhance further customs cooperation between the EU and China, in order to allow a smooth trade flow between both sides while providing citizens with a high level of protection. Securing the supply chain, tackling smuggling (particularly of cigarettes) and protecting intellectual property rights will be high on the agenda. China is the EU’s second trading partner after the USA and its biggest source of imports. The EU is China’s largest export market. Both the EU and China therefore have a real interest in ensuring that safe, genuine and legal products can easily enter each other’s markets. Commissioner Šemeta will spend 3 days in China, discussing key issues related to customs and anti-fraud measures with national authorities and business representatives, and will visit the port of Shanghai to see first-hand how Chinese customs controls operate.

EU-China Trade: Facts and Figures

China is the single most important challenge for EU trade policy. EU-China trade has increased dramatically in recent years. China is now the EU’s 2nd trading partner behind the USA and the biggest source of imports. The EU is China’s biggest trading partner. China is set to be the biggest national exporter in the global economy in 2009. China now accounts for about 9% of world trade in goods. Total bilateral trade between the EU and China was worth €326 billion in 2008.

EU-Canada Summit to launch negotiations for a new economic and free trade agreement

This year’s EU-Canada summit will take place in Prague on 6 May. The EU will be represented by European Commission President José Manuel Barroso and the Czech Prime Minister Mirek Topolánek in his role as EU President in Office. Canada will be represented by Prime Minister Stephen Harper. The Summit agenda will cover a range of issues starting from a follow-up to the recent G-20 meeting in London to an array of bilateral topics, such as the marking of the EU-Canada Air Transport Agreement and the EU-Canada Air Safety Agreement. The centrepiece of this year’s summit is the EU-Canada economic partnership as it will see the launch of negotiations towards a new economic and free trade agreement. This agreement will go beyond current WTO commitments and will reinforce the already strong bilateral trade and investment relationship. Furthermore, leaders will express their commitment to building a low-carbon global economy while strengthening capacity to adapt to the impacts of climate change. Other issues to be touched upon will include Afghanistan, where the EU and Canada are co-operating closely together to promote good governance and the rule of law.

EU bans DMF in consumer products such as toys and orders recalls

On May 1, a European Commission Decision comes into force to ensure that no consumer product containing the strongly sensitising DMF is placed on the market in the EU. The biocide dimethylfumarate (DMF) has caused severe allergic reactions, including skin itching, irritation, redness, burns and, in some cases, acute respiratory difficulties, in hundreds of consumers in the EU because of its use in imported every day consumer products such as couches and shoes. There has even been one case of a soft toy for small children. If already on the market, these products will have to be recalled and withdrawn without delay, and consumers will have to be informed about the serious risk. The Commission Decision is an EU wide emergency measure, pending the adoption of a more permanent regulatory solution.