The European Materials Handling Federation (FEM) co-founds INGRESS, the Industry Group on European Standardisation Strategy.
European manufacturers find themselves in a difficult position with respect to European standards. For some time now, industry has been requesting inclusion as an observer on the regulatory Committee on Standards (CoS). This is the body that takes implementing decisions on European Commission standardisation requests. These decisions invariably have an impact (be it positive or negative) on European companies using harmonized standards to show compliance with EU product legislation. Moreover, standards work is undertaken mainly by industry experts who contribute their expertise free of charge to develop European standards – equating to some 95% of standards’ development costs.
So why not involve industry as one of the accepted observers that Regulation EU 1025/2012 on European Standardisation grants to four categories of stakeholders? The recent Competitiveness Council conclusions stressed “the need for the European Standardisation system to remain inclusive, transparent, market-driven and efficient, and to be fit for the future”. The INGRESS platform has therefore been born from the common wish to inform European policy makers about industry’s interests and priorities for using harmonized standards in the framework of Regulation EU 1025/2012.
So far, 16 European industry associations have teamed up within INGRESS, with the numbers anticipated to rise rapidly not surprising when one considers the importance of the issue at stake.
“Harmonized standards are the backbone of a successful internal market for industrial products,” said Olivier Janin, FEM. “Yet, their close link with European legislation does not deprive them of the necessary market relevance. INGRESS is an excellent initiative to ensure that standardization remains a market-driven activity.”
March 27, 2015