preloader

Table of Contents

The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of 28 member states that are located in Europe. It has an estimated population of about 513 million and a 2017 gross domestic product at PPP of 20.8 U.S. dollars

The EU has developed an internal single market through a standardised system of laws that apply in all member states in those matters, and only those matters, where members have agreed to act as one. EU policies aim to ensure the free movement of people, goods, services and capital within the internal market act legislation in justice and home affairs and maintain common policies on trade, agriculture, fisheries and regional development. For travel within the Schengen Area, passport controls have been abolished.A monetary union was established in 1999 and came into full force in 2002 and is composed of 19 EU member states which use the euro currency.

512 mio. (2017)

28 Member states[1]: Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Germany, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Great Britain, Netherlands, Ireland, Italy, Croatia, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Austria, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Sweden, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Czech Republic, Hungary, Cyprus



[1] As of May 2019

English, French, German (most common)
There is no EU-wide uniform holiday regulation. As a rule, in the member states of the EU January 1st, Good Friday, Easter Monday, May 1st and December 25th and December 26th are public holidays. There are other national holidays in each country.

Catholic (45.3%), Protestant (11.1%), Orthodox (9.6%), Other Christian (5.6%), No religion/ Agnostic (13.6%), Atheist (10.4%), Muslim (1.8%), other religion (2.6%)

EURO (€): 1 € = 100 cent (aka Eurocent)

The Euro is the official currency in 19 EU countries (Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, Spain, France, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Austria, Portugal, Finland, Greece, Slovenia, Malta, Cyprus, Slovakia, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania)

Other currencies within the EU:

British pound

Bulgarian lev

Danish crown

Gibraltar Pound

Croatian Kuna

Polish złoty

Romanian leu

Swedish crown

Czech crown

Hungarian forint

Currency converter [1]

GDP compostion by sectors (2017, %) [1]

(2017, %)[2]: Agriculture and Forestry 1.6; Industry 19.6; Construction 5.4; Trade, repair, transport, hospitality, accommodation and catering 19.00; Information and Communication 5.0; Financial and insurance services 4.9; Real estate 11.3; Freelance, scientific, technical and other economic services 11.2; Public Administration, Defense, Education, Health and Welfare 18.6; Other services 3.5

(2017, in% of the total import) [1] Machinery, Vehicles 31.9; Chemicals 10.5; Food and beverages 6.0; Raw materials 4.2; Mineral fuels, lubricants and similar 18.2; other 29.2



[1] GTAI

(in% of the total export)[1]: Machinery, vehicles 42.0; Chemicals 17.7; Basic materials 2.7; Mineral. Fuels, lubricants and similar5.2; Food and beverages 6.5; other 25.9



[1] GTAI

Main supplier countries (2017; %)[1]

(2017; share in %)[2]

USA 13.8

China 20.2

Russian Federation 7.8

Switzerland 5.9

Norway 4.2.

Turkey 3.8

Japan 3.7

South Korea 2.7

Vietnam 2.0

India 2.4

Other 33.5



[1] GTAI

[2] GTAI

(2017; share %)[1]

USA 20.0

China 10.5

Russian Federation 4.6

Switzerland 8.0

Norway 2.7

Turkey 4.5

Japan 3.2

South Korea 2.6

India 2.2

UAE 2.3

Other 39.4



[1] GTAI

Product Export to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan (€ mio.) [1] Import from the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan (€ mio.) [2]
All products 3,569.00 300.00
Agricultural products 764.0 14.3
Fishery products 5.0 0.0
Industrial products 2,799.0 85.7

An Association Agreement between the European Union (EU) and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan came into force in May 2002. [1]

Production in the EU 2017 (Unit €) [1]

Manufacture of electric domestic appliances
Refrigerators and freezers, of the household type 4,113,241,293
Cloth washing and drying machines, of the household type 4,224,978,586
Manufacture of non-domestic cooling and ventilation equipment
Air conditioning machines 7,197,792,657

Main European producers of Cloth washing and drying machines are Germany, Italy and Poland. Main European producers of refrigerators and freezers are Poland, Italy and Hungary. Main European producers of air conditioning machines are Italy, Germany and France. [2]

The consumer price levels of household appliances considerably across the EU Member States. In 2017, the highest prices for household appliances were recorded in Malta (33% higher than the EU average), followed by Portugal (15%) and Sweden (14%).

Poland was the least expensive country for household appliances (23% lower than the EU average), followed by Bulgaria (15%) and Latvia (12%). [3]

2. Import of refrigerators, freezers, washing machines and air-conditioning machines in the EU 2018 (Unit €) [4]

Import of refrigerators and freezers
HS Code 8418
Refrigerators, freezers and other refrigerating or freezing equipment, electric or other; heat pumps other than air-conditioning machines of heading 4,320,605,796
Import of washing machines
HS Code 8450
Household or laundry-type washing machines, including machines which both wash and dry 1,682,848,753
Import of Air-conditioning machines
HS Code 8415
Air-conditioning machines, comprising a motor-driven fan and elements for changing the temperature and humidity, including those machines in which the humidity cannot be separately regulated 4,136,966,915

For the refrigerators and freezers sector, in particular, the main importers are the UK and France, followed by Germany. Other than that, Germany is the largest importer, as it is for domestic appliances as a whole.

For almost all of the European countries analysed, China is one of the top ten sources of domestic appliance imports. It is important to note that this may overstate the actual degree to which the value is added in the sector in China. Many appliances may be assembled in China (and their total value counted as an import when they are brought to Europe), but that might only represent a small share of the total value added through the value chain, which may be dominated by designers, components manufacturers, distributors or retailers elsewhere (including in Europe). The second biggest volume of imports comes from Turkey. [5] Then follow South Korea , Thailand and Serbia.[6]

3. Export of refrigerators, freezers, washing machines and air-conditioning machines from the EU 2018 (Unit €) [7]

Export of refrigerators and freezers
HS Code 8418
Refrigerators, freezers and other refrigerating or freezing equipment, electric or other; heat pumps other than air-conditioning machines of heading 4,121,057,050
Export of washing machines
HS Code 8450
Household or laundry-type washing machines, including machines which both wash and dry 995,947,795
Export of Air-conditioning machines
HS Code 8415
Air-conditioning machines, comprising a motor-driven fan and elements for changing the temperature and humidity, including those machines in which the humidity cannot be separately regulated 2,993,411,410

Germany is the largest European exporter of domestic appliances, followed by Italy and Poland. The most important destination for EU domestic appliance exports is Russia (for example accounting for around 22 percent of total EU exports of domestic appliances in 2014). The second largest export partner is the US (for example accounting for 11 percent of total EU domestic appliances export volume in 2014). [8]

4. Electric domestic appliances fairs in the EU

An overview of all trade fairs taking place in the member state of the EU can be found on the website of the AUMA - Association of the German Trade Fair Industry under the link https://www.auma.de/en. The AUMA service also includes the provision of the organisator and project team account information. The selection of electric domestic appliances fairs in the EU below is exemplary and by no means exhaustive.

TIBCO

Bucharest / Romania (International Trade Fair for Consumer Goods, annual)

https://www.tibco.ro/en/

Texcare International

Frankfurt / Main / Germany (World Market for Modern Textile Care, every 4 years)

http://www.texcare.de

Chillventa

Nuremberg / Germany (International Exhibition Refrigeration | AC & Ventilation | Heat Pumps, biennial)

https://www.chillventa.de/en




[4] EUROSTAT

[5] “The Economic Impact of the Domestic Appliances Industry in Europe Report for the European Committee of Domestic Equipment Manufacturers (CECED)”, March 2015 by Europe Economics Chancery House

[6] EUROSTAT

[7] EUROSTAT

[8] “The Economic Impact of the Domestic Appliances Industry in Europe Report for the European Committee of Domestic Equipment Manufacturers (CECED)”, March 2015 by Europe Economics Chancery House

Exporting to the EU means making international legal arrangements with your customer. If you are selling directly to a European customer, it is advisable to make a contract. Although this is not legally required, an international sale contract provides clarity to both partners and prevents business conflicts when, for example, a shipment is late or is damaged. If you use the ICC Incoterms 2010 for the transport of goods, it is still advisable to make an international sale contract. In an international sale contract you can arrange:

Contract Design

The contract sets the „rules of the game“ of the business, which are much more important and difficult to define in an international context than domestically, due to different cultures, languages and legal systems. The exporter is primarily concerned with the questions: How will I get my money? Who bears the risks and costs of transport? Which court decides in case of problems? Which law will then be used?

Only trust the written word

The purchase contract is not subject to formal requirements i.e. it can be concluded verbally or in writing. Only certain components such as jurisdiction or court of arbitration requires a written form in any case. In export, however, all contracts should be in writing, as the written form facilitates the argument in case of disputes.

Forms of the purchase contract

Basically, there are the following possibilities to conclude a contract:

- verbally

- in writing

- in „higher written form“ e.g. with notarised signatures

In the case of a verbal agreement, it should be noted that a declaration of intent can also be made through a telephone conversation. In foreign trade, however, written form is absolutely to be recommended, oral agreements should always be confirmed subsequently in writing.

The most important forms of written purchase contracts are:

- correspondence (letters, fax, e-mail)

- final letter

- contract note or Conclusion Certificate

In foreign trade, so-called correspondence contracts are by far the most important form of contract. In fact, it rarely happens that the contracting parties meet in one place to construct only a single document. It is customary, to have a contract with at least two documents, namely offer and acceptance (order). But there may also be a correspondence with several letters, until the contract finally takes effect after lengthy negotiations.

Final letters are standardized purchase contracts, that are usual in business with large companies. They usually start with the wording: "We sell you and you buy from us the following goods under the following conditions." Written on the front of these forms are the general terms and conditions and on the back the individual agreements. Contract notes or Conclusion Certificates are simplified forms of the final letter.

Subject matter of the contract

According to the subject matter of the contract, a distinction is made between commodity and service contracts. Commodity contracts are commercial or transit transactions. Among the service contracts, agency agreements (with sales representatives or independent dealers) and cooperation agreements (for example in joint ventures) are of particular importance.

Which components must a purchase contract contain?

In foreign trade, the purchase contract includes at least provisions on

- the services of the exporter

- the services of the importer

- the legislative framework

The performances of the exporter are defined by the following points:

- quality (nature and quality of the goods)

- quantity (quantity of the goods)

- price

- delivery conditions (place of fulfilment and period of performance)

The performances of the importers are defined by the following points:

- method of payment

- term of payment

The legal framework is determined by agreement of

- choice of law

- court of jurisdiction or court of arbitration

How is the quality of the goods determined?

There are various methods for determining quality that are reflected in the contract:

- inspection of all the goods, e.g. at auctions

- inspection of part of the goods e.g. of patterns or samples

- description of the goods e.g. through plans, photos, drawings, specifications

- reference to type designations or norms

After the arrival of the goods it comes to the quality assessment:

The buyer examines the quality delivered compared to what has been contractually agreed. In the process open or secret defects can be detected. Open defects must be reported immediately, secret defects after their discovery, but no later than six months after delivery of the goods.

The defect complaint

Open defects are immediately apparent at the first inspection and must be reported immediately. "Immediate" means at the earliest possible time after delivery, but without having to do overtime or night work.

However, the notification of defects must not only be immediate, but also substantively meaningful. It is not enough merely to announce that the goods have arrived in faulty condition, but the defects which have occurred must also be described. If they are described wrongly, then the complaint is invalid.

There are no formal requirements for complaints, but it is definitely advisable to submit them in writing for later proof. Quantity defects are always open defects and are therefore immediately to be reported after delivery.

If the buyer takes over the goods despite obvious defects, then he has no warranty claim later. A takeover "with reservation" does not guarantee the warranty claims in case of open defects.

Secret defects that only become apparent over time must be claimed no later than 6 months after delivery of the goods. Many suppliers, in particular of industrial products, voluntarily extend this period by guarantee or warranty.

Basically, the buyer is not obliged to accept a defective product. If he does and reprimands the deficiencies in time, then he has a warranty claim.

The product liability is different from the warranty. This refers to the liability of the manufacturer for personal injury and property damage resulting from the defectiveness of the product. If the manufacturer is located outside the European Economic Area or Switzerland, then the importer can be used for liability within this area.

If a faulty product has led to damage, then the manufacturer or the importer is liable in any case, even without fault. This product liability can`t be excluded by agreement. Excluded are only property damage suffered by an entrepreneur (but not a consumer). In this case, an exclusion is possible.

How can the price be changed during the course of the transaction?

The price is usually fixed in the purchase contract. However, with a longer period between contract conclusion and delivery of goods there is a risk that essential cost elements of the original calculation will change. Therefore special adjustment clauses are included in such cases.

These clauses could be

- cost fluctuation clauses and

- price fluctuation clauses

In a cost fluctuation clause changes in important costs e.g. wages or raw material prices are taken into account. For example, an agreement to increase wages by 25% may increase the selling price by 10%.

Terms of delivery

The terms of delivery regulate the place of performance and the fulfilment time. Place of performance is the place where the exporter has to accomplish the transfer action relevant for the fulfilment of the contract. He has to bear costs and risks up to the place of performance. Depending on the agreement, this may be his factory, the state border, the port of shipment or another location. If no place of performance has been agreed, the exporters place of business shall be deemed as such.

Fulfilment time is the time or period during which the exporter has to provide the transfer action relevant for the fulfilment of the contract.

Method and term of payment

The performance of the importer, besides accepting the goods, is the proper payment of the purchase price. In many cases however, this causes concern for the exporter, so he tries to take precautions as best as possible. The possibilities of payment protection in international business are:

Advance payment or deposit:

- receipt of the sales proceeds or a part even before the delivery

- thus lower risk

- very cheap, as there are no interest charges

- disadvantage: often not enforceable

Invoice:

- payment after the delivery of the goods

- exporter bears the full risk

- liquidity is claimed

- to be used only with confidence in the customer

Documentary collection

- documents and goods will be handed out only after payment

- business is handled through the respective house bank

- difficult realization, as customer must agree

- the risk is mitigated

Documentary letter

- In co-operation with the customer's house bank, there is an agreement that the product documents are first handed over to the customer's house bank and that it then promises to pay the purchase price.

- Most extensive security for the exporter

The legal framework

For each export business, it should be agreed which law and jurisdiction should be used in the event of a dispute. It often is the case that the judgements given in the country of the exporter or the importer are not enforceable in the other country. You have a valid court ruling, but you can not do anything with it abroad.

This disadvantage disappears on agreement of an arbitral tribunal, since arbitration awards are practically enforceable throughout the world.

Applicable law

Despite all the standardisation efforts of the European Union, every European state still has its own civil and commercial law. Only the law of Sale of Goods is the same in (almost) all EU Member States as a result of the nearly worldwide effective UN Convention on Contracts.

The UN Convention on Contracts governs the rights and obligations of buyers and sellers. However, it only applies to contracts between entrepreneurs, but not if the buyer is a private individual. In this case, the law at the place of business of the seller applies in principle, as far as no contrary choice-of-law has been agreed upon.

The agreement of the UN Sales Convention offers itself as a compromise solution, if the salesman wants his country right, the buyer however wants his country right. In this case, the UN Sales Convention forms a balanced middle course that takes into account the interests of both parties.

Choice of court agreement

Export contracts can mean that the exporting company must seek the help of foreign courts to enforce its purchase price claim. On the other hand, it is possible that the company will be involved in a foreign proceeding, for example if the buyer asserts claims for damages or warranty claims.

A lawsuit abroad can best be avoided by a jurisdiction agreement. However, jurisdiction agreements are only valid if they are made in writing. Since such an agreement is very important in an emergency, care must be exercised and, if necessary, the assistance of a lawyer should be used.

Arbitration has always been of great importance in international business. The parties agree in an arbitration agreement that instead of the ordinary courts, a court of arbitration should decide.

The following reasons speak for the agreement of a court of arbitration:

- arbitral awards are enforceable worldwide

- special expertise of the arbitrators

- the language of the proceedings may be freely chosen between the parties

- neutrality of the place of arbitration

- flexibility of arbitration

- non-publicity of the proceeding

A model clause on the agreement on arbitration is:

„All disputes arising out of or in connection with the present contract shall be finally settled under the Rules of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce by one or more arbitrators appointed in accordance with the said Rules. The place of arbitration shall be…………..The substantive law of….. shall be applicable and the language to be

used in the arbitral proceedings shall be........................... “

The maintenance of business relationships after the conclusion of contract

After conclusion of the negotiations, the question of contract loyalty arises. If both parties fulfil their contractual obligations, the business relationship is organized. Here and there it may come to an overdraft of the agreed delivery times, and the customer may apply for a bridging loan due to temporary illiquidity, but essentially the transaction proceeds satisfactorily and without major complications.

In cultures like the American or the German one comes to the negotiating table already with a draft contract and quite concrete ideas and then goes through clause-by-clause. Should it later come to differences of opinion, one adheres strictly to the wording of the contract. An American would find it very suspicious if his partner came up with non contractually agreed points, such as long-standing good relationships, if there are unexpected complications.

In these deal-based cultures, contracts are considered final and binding. Usually they have written form, because you do not like relying on verbal agreements. Even the fine print has its meaning. Emphasis is placed on maximum precision of the written word. Friendship and personal relationships are rather bothering in contract negotiations, they only come into play later in the maintenance of business relationships.

All hints given here are taken from publicly available sources. Among others, the source used was https://www.go-international.at/export-know-how/Vertragsgestaltung.html It is expressly pointed out that all information given in the legal matters section is not legally binding information. These are general recommendations. Before concluding contracts, a lawyer should always be called in.

Harmonised System [1]

The Harmonised System or 'HS' (Harmonised Commodity Description and Coding System) is a nomenclature developed by the World Customs Organisation (WCO) which comprises about 5 000 commodity groups, organised by Sections, Chapters (2 digit), Headings (4 digits) and Sub-headings (6 digits). The logic of the products classification relies on a hierarchical structure. In order to facilitate a uniform interpretation, the HS is supported by implementation rules and explanatory notes.

It is an important tool in foreign trade, as it allows the products to be exported to be accurately classified and specified according to internationally accepted definitions and standards. This classification makes it easy to determine the requirements applicable to the product in the destination country.

The European Union and its Member States apply the Harmonised System for tariff classification. The system is used by more than 200 countries as a basis for their customs tariffs and for international trade statistics.

The Combined Nomenclature (CN) is the European Union's coding system for classifying products, which was established to meet the requirements both of the Common Customs Tariff and of the international and intra-EU trade statistics. It is an 8-digit coding system, which is composed of the HS nomenclature with further EU subdivisions.

The Integrated Tariff of the European Communities (TARIC) identifies goods with a view to include all trade policy and tariff measures applicable in the EU (such as temporary suspension of duties, antidumping duties, etc.). Its structure is based on the 8-digit code of the CN and on two additional digits (Taric subheadings), as depicted in the example:

64 Footwear, gaiters and the like; parts of such articles (HS Chapter)
6403 Footwear with outer soles of rubber, plastics, leather or composition leather and uppers of leather (HS Heading)
640391 covering the ankle (HS Subheading)
64039105 Made on a base or platform of wood, not having an inner sole (CN Code)
6403910510 Handmade (Taric code)
6403910590 Other (Taric code)

EU Trade Helpdesk [1]

A good starting point to prepare yourself for exporting to the EU is the EU Trade Helpdesk of the European Commission.

The EU Trade Helpdesk is the main source of information for exporters to the EU.

To help exporters seize their trade opportunities EU Trade Helpdesk provides

  1. A search tool to find product-specific market information.
  2. General information about the EU market and the EU trade agreements in place

Within a few minutes companies can check:

  • health, safety and technical standards they'll need to meet
  • customs duties they'll need to pay at the border
  • internal taxes in each of the 28 countries
  • the rules of origin that define where a product is from and whether it profits from preferential duty rates
  • forms to send with they'll shipments

The EU Trade Helpdesk can also help you answer other question such as:

How can my product pass the EU borders?

The EU Trade Helpdesk provides you with the full list of technical, safety and labelling requirements your product needs to fulfill. You can also find the documents needed for customs clearance and information on import procedures.

How much will it cost me?

The EU Trade Helpdesk can calculate the import duty applying to your product and tells you whether you qualify for import duty exemption or discount. You can also find the Value Added Tax and excise duties for all EU countries.

How to obtain a preferential tariff?

The EU Trade Helpdesk explains the preferential trade agreements applying to your product and country and how to prove the origin of your product.

Which authorities to contact in each EU Member state?

The EU Trade Helpdesk provides you with contacts in EU countries.

How much of your product is imported or exported?

The Export Helpdesk assists your market research by providing detailed statistics on product-by-product EU trade flows.

One of the most helpful tools of the EU Trade Helpdesk is My Export. Most importantly, this search tool shows which tariffs, requirements and preferential trade arrangements apply per country and per product.

In order to identify EU technical regulations, technical standards and other requirements for the product to be exported, the already mentioned EU Trade Helpdesk should be used.

It is a link-based system and it can be assumed that the information and regulations determined are up-to-date.

First, the CN code or, if possible, the Taric code of the product must be determined.

1. TheEU Trade Helpdesk [1] has to be started.

2. In the window "I want to export from:" the name of the country of the exporter must be selected from the stored list.

3. In the window "To an EU Member State:" must be selected the EU member state to export to.

4. Then the right button "Find my product code" must be pressed. It opens the complete Combined Nomenclature of the EU. The best search function here is "search by productname" and then "guided search", as this method leads directly to the product with the help of product-specific questions.

5. Then the yellow button "Show in list of goods" must be pressed, the product will be highlighted in yellow in the list.

6. The yellow marked product must be clicked. Thus, the customs tariff number is adopted in the search mask.

7. Clicking on the yellow button "View rates and requirements" displays the following provisions of the export market country for the goods to be exported

There will be a window with 8 tabs.

Tab 1 EU import procedures and country-specific information

Amongst other things:

EU import procedures

Documents for customs clearance

Import procedures and competent authorities for the choosed EU Country

Tab 2 Product-specific requirements for EU market access

Amongst other things:

- Prohibition of product contents
- Import requirements

- Labelling

- Restrictions

- Technical standards

Tab 3 EU Import duties

Here, the import duties for the product in the EU and possibly existing tariff preferences are mentioned.

Tab 4 Internal Taxes of the choosed EU Member

Tab 5 Rules of Origin FTA Euromed

There appears a table with the following header:

HS heading Description of product Working or processing, carried out on non-originating materials, which confers originating status

Appropriate rules for the selected HS headings are mentioned. This section deals with the rules of origin relating to concluded free trade agreements, details of which can be found below this link .[2]

Tab 6 Rules of Origin PEM Convention

There appears a table with the following header:

HS heading Description of product Working or processing, carried out on non-originating materials, which confers originating status

Appropriate rules for the selected HS headings are mentioned. Here are the rules of origin regarding Pan-Euro-Med cumulation, details under this link . [3]

Tab 7 Statistics

Overview of foreign trade between the EU destination country and the exporting country

Tab 8 Show all

Overview of all topics in one window

Prohibition of products containing fluorinated greenhouse gases[1] [2]

In accordance with Regulation (EU) No 517/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L-150 20/05/2014) (CELEX 32014R0517) , the placing on the European Union (EU) market of products and equipment listed in Annex III , with an exemption for military equipment, is prohibited from the date specified in the Annex.

The prohibition shall not apply to equipment for which it has been established in ecodesign requirements adopted under Directive 2009/125/EC that due to higher energy efficiency during its operation, its lifecycle CO2 equivalent emissions would be lower than those of equivalent equipment which meets relevant ecodesign requirements and does not contain hydrofluorocarbons.

Ozone-Depleting Products [3]

Imports of products and equipment containing or relying on ozone-depleting substances (ODS) into the European Union are prohibited. This ban applies to imports from any country, whether or not party to the 1987 Montreal protocol on ODS.

Products liable to contain ODS are, for instance: fridges, freezers, air conditioning, asthma sprays, solvents, parts of machinery and vehicles.

Fire extinguishing equipment and other products based on halons may be imported under certain conditions for particular applications and subject to licensing.

Legislation

  • Regulation (EC) No 1005/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 September 2009 on substances that deplete the ozone layer (OJ L-286 31/10/2009) (CELEX 32009R1005)
Energy efficiency requirements for household refrigerating appliances[1][2]

Household refrigeration appliances can only be placed on the European Union (EU) market if they fulfil the following efficiency requirements:

  1. Ecodesign requirements established by Commission Regulation (EC) No 643/2009 (OJ L-191 23/07/2009) (CELEX 32009R0643) . This Regulation is an implementing measure of Directive 2009/125/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L-285 31/10/2009) (CELEX 32009L0125) , which establishes a framework under which manufacturers of energy-using products (EuP) must, at the design stage, reduce the energy consumption and other negative environmental impacts that occur during the product's life cycle.
  2. Energy labelling requirements established by Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1060/2010 OJ L-314 30/11/2010) (CELEX 32010R1060) . This Regulation is an implementing measure of Directive 2010/30/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L-153 18/06/2010) (CELEX 32010L0030) , which establishes a framework for labelling and consumer information regarding energy consumption of energy-related products. The objective is to allow consumers to make informed purchasing decisions based on energy consumption and to encourage manufacturers to design more efficient products to meet consumer demand.

    Note: Regulation (EU) 2017/1369 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 4 July 2017 setting a framework for energy labelling (OJ L-198 28/07/2017) (CELEX 32017R1369) repeals Directive 2010/30/EU as of 1 August 2017. However, product-specific delegated acts adopted pursuant to Directive 2010/30/EU, shall remain in force until they are replaced by new delegated acts adopted in accordance with Regulation (EU) 2017/1369.

Product scope

The ecodesign requirements apply to electric mains-operated household refrigerating appliances with a storage volume up to 1 500 litres. It includes those sold for non-household use or for the refrigeration of items other than foodstuffs.

The energy labelling requirements apply to electric mains-operated household refrigerating appliances with a storage volume between 10 and 1 500 litres, appliances, including those sold for non-household use or for the refrigeration of items other than foodstuffs and including built-in appliances.

The Regulations also apply to electric mains-operated household refrigerating appliances that can be battery-operated. They do not apply to the following products:

  • refrigerating appliances that are primarily powered by energy sources other than electricity;
  • battery-operated appliances that can be connected to the mains through an AC/DC converter purchased separately;
  • custom-made refrigerating appliances
  • refrigerating appliances for tertiary sector application;
  • appliances where the primary function is not the storage of foodstuffs through refrigeration, such as stand-alone ice-makers or chilled drink dispensers.

1. Ecodesign requirements

The following ecodesign requirements are set out in Annex II to Regulation (EC) No 643/2009:

  • Generic ecodesign requirements , which cover information to be provided in the instruction booklet and certain design requirements on various functions provided.
  • Specific ecodesign requirements , related to the energy efficiency index limits to be complied with.

Compliance with the ecodesign requirements shall be measured and calculated according to the methods set out in Annexes III and IV .

Conformity assessment

The manufacturer or his authorised representative established in the EU must attest the conformity of the appliances with the requirements laid down in Commission Regulation (EC) No 643/2009.

To this effect, they may choose between the internal design control system set out in Annex IV to Directive 2009/125/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council and the management system set out in Annex V to that Directive.

Technical documentation must be kept at the disposal of the relevant national authorities for the purposes of conformity assessment.

CE marking

Before a household refrigeration appliance is placed on the market, a CE marking of conformity shall be affixed and a declaration of conformity issued whereby the manufacturer or its authorised representative ensures and declares that the product complies with all relevant provisions of the Regulation.

The declaration of conformity must include the information specified in Annex VI to Directive 2009/125/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council and shall make reference to Commission Regulation (EC) No 643/2009.

Market surveillance

The Member States competent authorities shall perform market surveillance checks to ensure compliance of the appliances with the requirements of this Regulation. For this purpose, the authorities shall apply the verification procedure set out in Annex V to Commission Regulation (EC) No 643/2009.

2. Energy labelling requirements

Label

The label conveys information on the energy efficiency class of a particular model using letters, colours and arrows.

Household refrigerating appliances are given a rating between A+++ for the most efficient, and G for the least efficient appliances.

The colour scale consists of seven colours, where dark green denotes 'the most efficient class' and red means 'less efficient'.

Annex II to Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1060/2010 specifies the design and content of the label for the different classes of appliances:

  • Appliances classified in Energy efficiency classes A+++ to C
  • Appliances classified in Energy efficiency classes D to G
  • Wine storage appliances

According to Annex IX , the energy efficiency classes of the appliance shall be determined on the basis of its Energy Efficiency Index (EEI) calculated in accordance with Annex VIII to the Regulation.

Fiche

The energy label has to be supported by a product fiche providing basic data relating to the particular model of refrigerating appliance. This fiche has to be contained in all product brochures and if these are not provided, in all other product literature supplied with the appliance.

The specific content of the fiche is set out by Annex III to the Regulation.

Distance selling or other forms of selling

Where refrigerating appliances are offered for sale, hire or hire-purchase by mail order, by catalogue, telemarketing or by other means whereby the potential end-user is unable to see the product displayed, the supplier must provide the relevant information enclosed in Annex V to the Regulation. The provisions of Annex X shall apply where the offer is made through the internet and an electronic version of the label and product fiche have been supplied.

Implementation of the labelling scheme

The suppliers (i.e. the manufacturer, his authorised representative in the EU or the importer who places the product on the EU market) shall:

  • Supply the necessary printed labels and product fiche free of charge to the dealer
  • Make an electronic version of the energy label and product fiche available to dealers for products placed on the market from 1 January 2015 with a new model identifier
  • Include a product fiche in all product brochures or with other literature provided with the product
  • Assume responsibility for the accuracy of the label and fiche
  • Produce technical information, as set out in Annex IV to the Regulation, sufficient to enable the accuracy of the information contained in the label and the fiche to be assessed (product description, test reports, etc.)
  • Make the technical information available for inspection purposes (including an electronic version available within 10 days on request). The documentation must be kept for 5 years after the product has stopped being manufactured
  • Be considered to have given consent to the publication of the information provided on the label or in the fiche

The dealers must display labels properly, in a clearly visible and legible manner, and make the fiche available in the product brochure or other literature that accompanies products when sold to end users. The information must be displayed in the relevant language version.

Compliance with the energy labelling requirements shall be measured and calculated according to the methods set out in Annex VI to the Regulation.

Information requirements

Advertisements for a specific model of refrigerating appliance must include a reference to the energy efficiency class of the product, if energy-related or price information is disclosed.

Technical promotional material provided to end-users must include information on the energy efficiency class of the product.

The display of other labels, marks, symbols or inscriptions which do not comply with the requirements of Directive 2010/30/EU is prohibited, if such display is likely to mislead or confuse end-users with respect to the consumption of energy or other essential resources during use.

Product database

As of 1 January 2019, suppliers must register each new model in the EuropeanProduct Registration database for Energy Labelling (EPREL) database .

The information to be entered in the database is set out in Annex I to Regulation (EU) 2017/1369.

Products placed on the market between 1 August 2017 and 1 January 2019 must be registered by 30 June 2019. Products placed on the market before 1 August 2017 may be registered on a voluntary basis.

Market surveillance

The Member States competent authorities shall perform market surveillance checks to ensure compliance of household refrigerating appliances with the requirements of Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1060/2010. For this purpose, the authorities shall apply the verification procedure set out in Annex VII to the Regulation.

In case of non-compliance, the Member State may restrict or prohibit its placing on the market or withdraw the product from the market.

Marketing of products containing fluorinated greenhouse gases[1] [2]

The marketing of products and equipment containing fluorinated greenhouse gases is subject to the regulatory framework laid down by Regulation (EU) No 517/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L-150 20/05/2014) (CELEX 32014R0517) .

Hence, these products are affected by provisions concerning more particularly:

  • Market prohibitions
  • Labelling requirements
  • Reporting of information
  • Registration obligations

Market prohibitions

In accordance with Regulation (EU) No 517/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L-150 20/05/2014) (CELEX 32014R0517) , the placing on the European Union (EU) market of products and equipment listed in Annex III , with an exemption for military equipment, is prohibited from the date specified in the Annex.

The prohibition shall not apply to equipment for which it has been established in ecodesign requirements adopted under Directive 2009/125/EC that due to higher energy efficiency during its operation, its lifecycle CO2 equivalent emissions would be lower than those of equivalent equipment which meets relevant ecodesign requirements and does not contain hydrofluorocarbons.

Labelling requirements

The following types of products and equipment that contain, or whose functioning relies upon fluorinated greenhouse gases, can only be marketed in the European Union if they meet certain labelling rules:

  • refrigeration equipment
  • air conditioning equipment
  • heat pumps
  • fire protection equipment
  • electrical switchgear
  • aerosol dispenser that conain fluorinated greenhouse gases, with the exception of metered dose inhalers for the delivery of pharmaceutical ingredients
  • all fluorinated greenhouse gas containers
  • fluorinated greenhouse gas-based solvents
  • organic Rankine cycles

The label must contain the following particulars:

  • a reference that the product or equipment contains fluorinated greenhouse gases or that its functioning relies upon such gases
  • the accepted industry designation for the fluorinated greenhouse gases concerned or, if no such designation is available, the chemical name
  • the quantity of the fluorinated greenhouse gases, expressed in kilograms. (From 1 January 2017, it is compulsory to include the quantity expressed in weight and in CO2 equivalent of fluorinated greenhouse gases contained in the product or equipment, or the quantity of fluorinated greenhouse gases for which the equipment is designed, and the global warming potential of those gases. The weight of the fluorinated greenhouse gases shall be expressed in kilograms and the CO2 equivalent shall be expressed in tonnes)
  • where applicable, a reference that the fluorinated greenhouse gases are contained in hermetically sealed equipment, and/or a reference that the electrical switchgear has a tested leakage rate of less than 0,1 % per year as set out in the technical specification of the manufacturer

Foams and pre-blended polyols that contain fluorinated greenhouse gases, shall be marked in addition with a label using the accepted industry designation or, if no such designation is available, the chemical name. The label shall clearly indicate that the foam or pre-blended polyol contains fluorinated greenhouse gases. In the case of foam boards, this information shall be clearly and indelibly stated on the boards.

The information provided by labels must be clearly legible and indelible and shall be placed either adjacent to the service ports for charging or recovering the fluorinated greenhouse gas or on that part of the product or equipment that contains the fluorinated greenhouse gas.

Information shall be included in instruction manuals for the products and equipment concerned.In the case of products and equipment that contain fluorinated greenhouse gases with a global warming potential of 150 or more this information shall also be included in descriptions used for advertising.

The label shall be in the official languages of the Member State in which it is to be placed on the market.

Declaration of conformity

From 1 January 2017 refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pump equipment charged with hydrofluorocarbons shall not be placed on the market unless hydrofluorocarbons charged into the equipment are accounted for within the quota system. Importers shall draw up a declaration of conformity as set out in the Annex to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 2016/879 (OJ L-146 03/06/2016) (CELEX 32016R0879) .

Importers of equipment shall keep the following documentation for release for free circulation in the Union:

  • the declaration of conformity;
  • a list identifying the equipment released for free circulation providing the following information:
    • the model information;
    • the number of units per model;
    • the identification of the type of hydrofluorocarbons contained in each model;
    • the quantity of hydrofluorocarbons in each unit rounded to the nearest gram;
    • the total quantity of hydrofluorocarbons in kilograms and in tonnes of CO2 equivalent;
  • the customs declaration related to the release for free circulation of the equipment in the Union;
  • where the hydrofluorocarbons contained in the equipment have been placed on the market in the Union, subsequently exported and charged into the equipment outside the Union, a delivery note or invoice, as well as a declaration by the undertaking that placed the hydrofluorocarbons on the market, stating that the quantity of hydrofluorocarbons has been or will be reported as placed on the market in the Union and that it has not been and will not be reported as direct supply for export.

From 1 January 2018 importers of equipment shall submit the verification document issued by an independent auditor by 31 March every year for the preceding calendar year and indicate the auditor's findings about the level of accuracy of the relevant documentation and declarations of conformity. Data shall be submitted electronically using the reporting tool based on the format set out in the Annex to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 1191/2014 (OJ L-318 05/11/2014) (CELEX 32014R1191) which is accesible from the F-Gas portal on the EU Directorate-General for Environment's website: http://ec.europa.eu/clima/policies/f-gas/reporting/index_en.htm :

Reporting of information

Importers who import at least one metric tonne or 100 tonnes of CO2 equivalent of fluorinated greenhouse gases and gases listed in Annex II per year, including companies to which quotas have been transferred, shall report to the Commission, on a yearly basis, the information specified in Annex VII .

Data shall be submitted electronically using the reporting tool based on the format set out in the Annex to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 1191/2014 (OJ L-318 05/11/2014) (CELEX 32014R1191) which is accesible from the F-Gas portal on the EU Directorate-General for Environment's website: http://ec.europa.eu/clima/policies/f-gas/reporting/index_en.htm

Registry

An electronic registry for quota for placing HFCs on the market, the HFC Registry, has been set up in line with Article 17 of the Regulation. Registration in the HFC Registry is compulsory for importers to receive a quota or to which a quota is transferred. It is also compulsory for:

  • importers declaring their intention to submit a declaration
  • importers supplying, or undertakings in receipt of HFCs for the purpose listed in Article 15(2), namely HFCs imported for destruction, for use as feedstock, directly exported in bulk, as well as for use in military equipment, in semiconductor manufacture or for metered dose inhalers (MDIs)
  • importers of equipment placing pre-charged equipment on the market where the hydrofluorocarbons contained in the equipment have not been placed on the market prior to the charging of that equipment
Marketing requirements for electrical and electronic equipment[1] [2]

In order to prevent the production and disposal of hazardous waste and to promote reuse, recycling and other forms of recovery of such waste, the placing on the European Union (EU) market of electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) is subject to the following requirements:

1. Restriction of hazardous substances (RoHS)

According to Directive 2011/65/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L-174 01/07/2011) (CELEX 32011L0065), EEE placed on the market, including cables and spare parts for its repair, reuse, updating or upgrading, shall not contain certain hazardous substances in amounts exceeding the following maximum concentration values:

  • 0.01 % by weight in homogeneous materials for cadmium
  • 0.1 % by weight in homogeneous materials for lead, mercury, hexavalent chromium, polybrominated biphenyls (PBB) and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE)

Certain applications of these substances, listed in Annexes III and IV to the Directive are exempted from this requirement.

Before placing the EEE on the market, the manufacturer must draw up the required technical documentation and carry out the internal production control procedure to ensure compliance of the product with the requirements laid down in the Directive. He must also draw up an EU declaration of conformity and affix the CE marking to the finished product or to its data plate.

For traceability reasons, manufacturers must indicate their name or registered trade mark and contact address and mark the equipment with type, batch or serial number or other element allowing its identification.

Importers and distributors must ensure that manufacturers have met their obligations and that only compliant products are placed on the EU market.

The Member States competent authorities shall perform market surveillance and controls of EEE entering the EU market.

The Directive applies to EEE within the categories set out in Annex I . The Directive does not apply to:

  • equipment which is necessary for the protection of the essential interests of the security of Member States, including arms, munitions and war material intended for specifically military purposes;
  • equipment designed to be sent into space;
  • equipment which is specifically designed, and is to be installed, as part of another type of equipment that is excluded from or does not fall within the scope of this Directive, which can fulfil its function only if it is part of that equipment, and which can be replaced only by the same specifically designed equipment;
  • large-scale stationary industrial tools;
  • large-scale fixed installations;
  • means of transport for persons or goods, excluding electric two-wheel vehicles which are not type-approved;
  • non-road mobile machinery made available exclusively for professional use;
  • active implantable medical devices;
  • photovoltaic panels intended to be used in a system that is designed, assembled and installed by professionals for permanent use at a defined location to produce energy from solar light for public, commercial, industrial and residential applications;
  • equipment specifically designed solely for the purposes of research and development only made available on a business-to-business basis.

2. Waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE)

Directive 2012/19/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L-197 24/07/2012) (CELEX 32012L0019) establishes responsability of manufacturers and sellers (termed 'producers' under the Directive), or their authorised representatives, regarding WEEE management, specifically referred to the following aspects:

  • The design and production of EEE must facilitate re-use, dismantling and and recovery of WEEE.
  • EEE placed on the market must be appropriately marked with the symbol shown in Annex IX to Directive 2012/19/EU in order to facilitate its separate collection. Where necessary, the symbol may be printed on the packaging, on the instructions for use and on the warranty.
  • Producers must set up individual or collective systems for the collection, treatment and recovery of WEEE and meet the recovery targets established by Annex V to the Directive.
  • When placing EEE on the market, producers must provide for a guarantee for the financing of the collection, treatment, recovery and sound disposal of waste arising from their products.
  • Producers must provide information for users and treatment facilities on the re-use and treatment for new EEE within one year of placing it onto the market.
  • Producers are required to register with the competent authority appointed by the Member State and have data reporting obligations relating to the amount and categories of EEE put on the market and relevant levels of recycling achieved. The information to be submited for registration and reporting is set out in Annex X to the Directive.

Note: From 15 August 2018, all EEE are covered by the Directive unless excluded (open scope) and must be classified under one of the six categories listed in Annex III as regards targets and reporting. A non-exhaustive list of EEE falling within these categories is provided in Annex IV .

The Directive does not apply to:

  • equipment which is necessary for the protection of the essential interests of the security of Member States, including arms, munitions and war material intended for specifically military purposes;
  • equipment which is specifically designed, and is to be installed, as part of another type of equipment that is excluded from or does not fall within the scope of this Directive, which can fulfil its function only if it is part of that equipment;
  • filament bulbs
  • equipment designed to be sent into space;
  • large-scale stationary industrial tools;
  • large-scale fixed installations, except any equipment which is not specifically designed and installed as part of those installations;
  • means of transport for persons or goods, excluding electric two-wheel vehicles which are not type-approved;
  • non-road mobile machinery made available exclusively for professional use;
  • equipment specifically designed solely for the purposes of research and development that is only made available on a business-to-business basis;
  • medical devices and in vitro diagnostic medical devices, where such devices are expected to be infective prior to end of life, and active implantable medical devices

See “Health control of articles in contact with food products”, “Energy efficiency requirements for professional refrigerating equipment”, “Energy efficiency requirements for household refrigerating appliances” and “Marketing of products containing fluorinated greenhouse gases”.

1. The WEEE symbol [1]

Environment and waste

EU consumers are paying more attention to environmental issues when making a purchasing decision. Themes such as waste management, CO2 performance, energy use and green energy play a role. Having good environmental performance in your company might enhance your chances of success in the European market. The EU has a policy on waste management that focuses on: waste prevention, recycling and re-use, and improved waste disposal and handling. When it comes to trade, waste prevention is the most important. Using as little unnecessary material will also lead to less waste.

WEEE Directive Electric and electronic equipment is a complex mixture of materials and components that, due to their hazardous content, can cause major environmental and health problems. There is legislation on what should be done with the waste produced by electric and electronic equipment (WEEE). The WEEE Directive obliges the importer to participate in collection schemes where consumers return their WEEE free of charge. Be aware that a European importer can ask his supplier to fulfill some of these obligations. Questions on implementation and whether your product falls within the scope of the WEEE Directive can be addressed to the network of national registers of EU Member States.

RoHS RoHS stands for Restriction of Hazardous Substances, and impacts the entire electronics industry and many electrical products as well. The RoHS Directives restrict the use of ten hazardous materials found in electrical and electronic products. All applicable products in the EU market must pass RoHS compliance. Any business that sells applicable electrical or electronic products, equipment, sub-assemblies, cables, components, or spare parts directly to RoHS countries, or sells to resellers and distributors is impacted if they utilize any of the restricted 10 substances.

More information The EU and waste management – European Commission: http://ec.europa.eu/environment/waste/index.htm

Contact information on implementation of the WEEE Directive – European Commission: http://ec.europa.eu/environment/waste/weee/contacts_en.htm

2. "CE" marking [2]

Many products require CE marking before they can be sold in the EU. CE marking proves that a product has been assessed and meets EU safety, health and environmental protection requirements. It is valid for products manufactured both inside and outside the EU, that are then marketed inside the EU.[3]

CE marking indicates that a product complies with all requirements for CE marking and that it has passed the relevant conformity assessment procedure.

Confirmity Assessment

Procedures to assess the conformity of products to the essential requirements laid down in technical harmonisation directives are carried out by:

  • the manufacturer, or
  • a third party. 'Notified bodies' in each EU country are responsible for conformity assessment when a third party is required.

More information on notified bodies

Conformity assessment procedures cover the design phase of products, their production phase or both, in a variety of ways: internal control of production, full quality assurance, etc.

Mutual recognition agreements exist between the EU and certain non-EU countries which are on a comparable level of technical development and have a compatible approach to conformity assessment.

A manufacturer can only place a product on the EU market when it meets all the applicable requirements. The conformity assessment procedure is carried out before the product can be sold. The European Commission’s main objective is to help ensure that unsafe or otherwise non-compliant products do not find their way to the EU market.

A conformity assessment is

  • The conformity of a product is assessed before it is placed on the market.
  • It needs to demonstrate that all legislative requirements are met.
  • It includes testing, inspection and certification.
  • The procedure for each product is specified in the applicable product legislation.

How does it work in practice?

  • Product legislation describes the conformity assessment procedures for each product.
  • Manufacturers may choose between different conformity assessment procedures, if applicable.
  • The assessment is carried out by the manufacturer. If the applicable legislation requires it, a conformity assessment body is involved in the conformity assessment process – see Notified bodies

Declaration of Conformity

As part of conformity assessment, the manufacturer or the authorised representative must draw up an Declaration of conformity (DoC). The declaration should contain all information to identify:

  • the product
  • the legislation according to which it is issued
  • the manufacturer or the authorised representative
  • the notified body if applicable
  • a reference to harmonised standards or other normative documents, where appropriate.

Below the link [4] you will find a current list of products subject to certification in the EU. There are also all directives of the EU for the respective products to call.

How to get a CE Marking

Six steps to affix a CE marking to a product:

  1. Identify the applicable directive(s) and harmonised standards
  2. Verify product specific requirements
  3. Identify whether an independent conformity assessment (by a notified body) is necessary
  4. Test the product and check its conformity
  5. Draw up and keep available the required technical documentation
  6. Affix the CE marking and draw up the EU Declaration of Conformity (27 KB).

These six steps may differ by product as the conformity assessment procedure varies. Manufacturers must not affix CE marking to products that don’t fall under the scope of one of the directives providing for its affixing.

For products that present higher safety risks such as gas boilers, safety cannot be checked by the manufacturer alone. In these cases, an independent organisation, specifically a notified body appointed by national authorities, has to perform the safety check. The manufacturer may affix the CE marking to the product only once this has been done. [5]

1. Technical standards for electromagnetic compatibility[1] [2]

The placing on the European Union (EU) market of electrical and electronic apparatus is subject to the compliance with mandatory essential requirements established by the Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Directive 2014/30/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L-96 29/03/2014) (CELEX 32014L0030) which aims to ensure that their performance is protected against electromagnetic disturbances.

Product scope

The Directive applies to electric and electronic appliances presenting the following characteristics:

  • they may generate or contribute to electromagnetic emissions which exceed a level allowing radio and telecommunication equipment and other equipment to operate as intended, or
  • their functioning generates unacceptable degradation in the presence of the electromagnetic disturbance normally consequent upon their intended use.

The Directive is not applicable to products where the EMC aspect is covered by other specific directives or regulations. The Directive does not cover certain products, listed in Article 2 paragraph 2, such as medical devices; certain aviation equipment (aircraft and unmanned aircraft, as well as associated engines, propellers, parts and non-installed equipment) intended exclusively for airborne use; radio equipment, unless the equipment is made available on the market; certain equipment with special physical characteristics and custom built evaluation kits destined for professionals to be used solely at research and development facilities for such purposes.

Provisions related to essential requirements, conformity assessment procedures, CE and other information marks will not be compulsory for appliances which are intended for incorporation into a given fixed installation but are otherwise not made available on the market.

Essential requirements

These electronic appliances must meet the mandatory essential requirements set out set out in Annex I in such a way that:

  • they do not cause electromagnetic disturbance exceeding the level above which radio and telecommunications equipment or other equipment cannot operate as intended,
  • they have the adequate level of immunity to such disturbance which allows them to operate without unacceptable degradation of their intended use.

Harmonised standards

Harmonised standards are technical specifications that facilitate compliance. Products manufactured according to these harmonised standards benefit from a presumption of compliance with the essential safety requirements.

Harmonised standards are developed by the European Standardisation body: CENELEC (European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization) and ETSI (European Telecommunications Standards Institute) . These bodies are independent organisations whose mission is to develop respectively voluntary electrotechnical and telecommunication standards, in order to promote free trade in the single European Market. The standards are published in the Official Journal of the European Communities and transposed into national legislation in the form of national standards with identical characteristics.

A list of approved harmonised standards can be found at:

http://ec.europa.eu/growth/single-market/european-standards/harmonised-standards/electromagnetic-compatibility/index_en.htm

Conformity assessment

The conformity assessment process is required to certify that products comply with the provisions laid down in the Directive.

Compliance of apparatus shall be demonstrated by means of the procedures described in Annex II (Internal production control) and Annex III ( EU type-examination by a notified body followed by Conformity to type):

  • Internal production control:

The manufacturer shall perfom an electromagnetic compatibility assessment of the apparatus and establish the technical documentation providing evidence of the conformity of the apparatus with the essential requirements of this Directive. As part of the conformity assessment, the manufacturer or the authorised representative must draw up an EU declaration of conformity in compliance with the model presented in Annex IV .

  • EU type-examination by a notified body:

The manufacturer submits a technical file to the notified body, which ascertains the conformity to the Directive and issues an EU-type examination certificate. The manufacturer must ensure conformity of the apparatus with the approved type described in the EU-type examination certificate and draw up an EU declaration of conformity in compliance with the model presented in Annex IV .

CE marking

When being placed on the EU market, electrical and electronic apparatus covered by the Directive must bear the CE marking as proof of conformity with the applicable essential requirements. The mark shall be affixed visibly, legibly and indelibly to the apparatus or to its data plate or, if this is not possible or not warranted on account of the nature of the apparatus, it shall be affixed to the packaging and to the accompanying documents.

The Directive provides for procedures established by the Member States for cases where the CE marking has been affixed unduly.

Market surveillance

Each Member State establishes authorities to be responsible for checking that products placed on the market meet the requirements of the applicable directives and that the affixing and use of the CE marking is correct.

Apparatus complying with the Directive enjoy free circulation within the EU. However, in case a Member State ascertains that a product bearing the CE marking does not comply with the requirements of the directive, the Member State shall withdraw the product from the market, forbid its placing on the market or restrict the free movement thereof.

The Member State shall inform the Commission and the other Member States of any measure adopted, indicating the grounds for its decision.

2. Technical standards for low voltage electrical equipment [3]

The placing on the European Union (EU) market of low-voltage electrical equipment is subject to the compliance with mandatory essential requirements established by Directive 2014/35/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L-96 29/03/2014) (CELEX 32014L0035) in order to ensure the health and safety of persons, domestic animals or property.

Product scope

The Directive covers electrical equipment (including some components intended for incorporation into other equipment) designed for the use with a voltage rating:

  • between 50 and 1000 V for alternating current;
  • between 75 and 1500 V for direct current.

In particular, products such as electrical appliances, lighting equipment, electric wiring, appliance couplers and cord sets, or electrical installation equipment, are covered by the Directive.

Equipment outside the scope of the Directive is listed in Annex II to the Directive .

Essential requirements

The essential safety requirements, which are laid down in Annex I to the Directive , protect against risks arising from the use of the electrical equipment and risks which may be caused by external influences on the electrical equipment, including not just electrical ones but also mechanical, chemical and any other risk (noise, vibrations...).

Harmonised standards

Harmonised standards are technical specifications that facilitate compliance. Products manufactured according to the following harmonised standards benefit from a presumption of compliance with the essential safety requirements:

- The harmonised standards drawn up by the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardisation (CENELEC) on the basis of the essential requirements set in the Directive; or

- In the absence of harmonised standards, international rules issued by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) .

These bodies are independent organisations whose mission is to develop respectively voluntary technical and electrotechnical standards, and hence faciliate free trade in the single European Market. The standards are published in the Official Journal of the European Communities and transposed into national legislation in the form of national standards with identical characteristics.

A compilation of the references of standards for pyrotechnic articles may be found in: http://ec.europa.eu/growth/single-market/european-standards/harmonised-standards/low-voltage/index_en.htm

Conformity assessment

The conformity assessment process is required to certify that products comply with the provisions laid down in the Directive. There is no conformity assessment procedure in this Directive which requires the intervention of a notified body.

The manufacturer must affix the CE marking to each product and draw up a written declaration of conformity that shall contain the elements specified in Annex III module A .

The manufacturer must compile the technical documentation (covering the design, manufacture and operation of the product) which enables to assess whether the electrical equipment complies with the requirements of the Directive. This documentation, together with a copy of the declaration of conformity, must be kept at the disposal of the competent national authorities for inspection purposes for a period of 10 years from the date of manufacture of the product.

Where neither the manufacturer nor his authorised representative are established within the EU, the importer or the person first placing the product on the EU market is responsible for ensuring the technical documentation.

As part of the conformity assessment, the manufacturer or the authorised representative must draw up an EU declaration of conformity in compliance with the model presented in Annex IV.

CE marking

When being placed on the EU market, products covered by the Directive must bear the CE marking as proof of conformity with the applicable essential requirements. The mark shall be affixed visibly, legibly and indelibly to the electrical equipment or to its data plate or, if this is not possible or not warranted on account of the nature of the electrical equipment, it shall be affixed to the packaging and to the accompanying documents.

The Directive provides for procedures established by the Member States for cases where the CE marking has been affixed unduly.

Market surveillance

The competent authorities of the Member State must check that electrical equipment placed on its market comply with the requirements laid down in the Directive. In case they find that a product does not comply with the essential safety requirements or present a risk to the health or safety, they must restrict or forbid the placing on the market of this product, or even removeit from the market where other corrective measures have failed.

According to Regulation (EC) No 765/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L-218 13/08/2008) (CELEX 32008R0765) , Member States' authorities in charge of external border controls shall also control the conformity of the product at the points of entry into the EU.

Legislation

  • Directive 2014/35/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council on the harmonisation of the laws of Member States relating to the making available on the market of electrical equipment designed for use within certain voltage limits (OJ L-96 29/03/2014) (CELEX 32014L0035)
  • Regulation (EC) No 765/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 9 July 2008 setting out the requirements for accreditation and market surveillance relating to the marketing of products and repealing Regulation (EEC) No 339/93 (OJ L-218 13/08/2008) (CELEX 32008R0765)
  • Regulation (EU) No 1025/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2012 on European standardisation, amending Council Directives 89/686/EEC and 93/15/EEC and Directives 94/9/EC, 94/25/EC, 95/16/EC, 97/23/EC, 98/34/EC, 2004/22/EC, 2007/23/EC, 2009/23/EC and 2009/105/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council and repealing Council Decision 87/95/EEC and Decision No 1673/2006/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ-316 14/11/2012) (CELEX 32012R1025)

Other information sources

European Commission - Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, Guidelines on the application of the Low Voltage Directive and recommendations:
http://ec.europa.eu/growth/sectors/electrical-engineering/lvd-directive/index_en.htm

3. Technical standards for machinery and safety components[4] [5]

In order to be placed on the European Union (EU) market, the design and construction of machinery must meet the requirements which have been established by the EU legislation with a view to protecting the safety of persons using such machinery.

Product scope

Directive 2006/42/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council on machinery (OJ L-157 09/06/2006) (CELEX 32006L0042) establishes the mandatory essential health and safety requirements to be satisfied before being marketed in the EU in order to eliminate any risk of accident. It applies to the following products:

  • machinery and partly completed machinery;
  • interchangeable equipment;
  • safety components;
  • lifting accessories;
  • chains, ropes and webbing;
  • removable mechanical transmission devices

The Directive does not cover certain products, listed in Article 1 paragraph 2, such as safety components intended to be used as spare parts to replace identical components and supplied by the manufacturer of the original machinery; equipment for use in fairgrounds and/or amusement parks; machinery for nuclear purposes; weapons, including firearms; certain means of transport; seagoing vessels and mobile offshore units and machinery installed on board such vessels and/or units; machinery for military or police purposes; machinery for research purposes; mine winding gear; machinery intended to move performers during artistic performances; machinery covered by the Low Voltage Directive; high-voltage electrical equipment.

Certain types of machinery (e.g. lifts, cableways, weapons, medical devices, agricultural and forestry tractors,...) are covered by specific Directives and they are therefore excluded from the scope of this Directive.

Essential requirements

The essential safety requirements protect against any risk caused by the use of machinery (mechanical risks, electrical risks, extreme temperatures, fire, explosion, noise, radiation, emission of gases, risk of being trapped in a machine, etc.). Essential health and safety requirements for the protection of the environment are only applicable to machinery for pesticide application.

They cover aspects such as the design of the machine to facilitate its handling, the instructions of use, ergonomics, materials, control systems, maintenance, warnings, etc.

The Directive arranges more specific health and safety requirements for certain categories of machinery or for certain hazards.

Harmonised standards

Harmonised standards are technical specifications that would enable to meet the essential requirements. Products manufactured according to these harmonised standards benefit from a presumption of compliance with the essential requirements.

Harmonised standards are developed by the European Standardisation bodies: CEN (European Committee for Standardization) and CENELEC (European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization) . These bodies are independent organisations whose mission is to develop respectively voluntary technical and electrotechnical standards, in order to promote free trade in the single European Market. The standards are published in the Official Journal of the European Communities and transposed into national legislation in the form of national standards with identical characteristics.

List of references of harmonised standards for machinery: http://ec.europa.eu/growth/single-market/european-standards/harmonised-standards/machinery/index_en.htm

Conformity assessment

There are two different procedures depending on the risk factor of the product:

A) Machinery and safety components included in Annex IV to the Directive

- For Annex IV machinery designed according to harmonised standards covering all the relevant essential requirements the manufacturer will be able to certify the conformity of the machinery himself. One of the following procedures has to be followed at the manufacturer's choice:

  1. Assessment of conformity with internal checks on the manufacture of machinery.
  2. The EC type examination by a Notified Body.
  3. Approval by a Notified Body of his full quality assurance system.

- For other Annex IV machinery, the intervention of a third party (notified body) is needed. The manufacturer will be able to choose between the EC type examination by a Notified Body or approval by a Notified Body of his full quality assurance system

Notified bodies are organisations designated by each Member State and notified to the Commission and the other Member States, that are in charge of assessing manufacturer's conformity to the essential requirements when a third party is required.

B) Machinery and safety components not included in Annex IV to the Directive

The manufacturer or his authorised representative is responsible for certifying the conformity of his machinery to the relevant essential requirements in order to affix the CE marking. He shall apply the procedure for assessment of conformity with internal checks on the manufacture of machinery.

The manufacturer shall draw up the technical file referred to in Annex VII, part A which must be kept available to the competent Member State authorities for 10 years from the date of manufacture of the product. He must take all necessary measures to ensure that the manufacturing process complies with the technical file and with the requirements of this Directive.

CE marking

Machines must bear the CE marking as depicted in Annex III and be accompanied by an EC declaration of conformity, certifying that they meet the essential requirements established by the Directive.

Before being placed on the market, partly completed machinery do not carry the CE marking, but they must be accompanied by a declaration of incorporation stating that it is to be incorporated into machinery or assembled with other partly completed machinery to form machinery.

Market surveillance

Each Member State establishes authorities to be responsible for checking that products placed on the market meet the requirements of the applicable directives and that the affixing and use of the CE marking is correct.

Machinery and safety components complying with the Directive enjoy free circulation within the EU. However, in case the authorities of a Member State find that the product does not comply with the essential safety requirements, they must restrict or forbid the placing on the market of this product, or even remove it from the market where other corrective measures have failed.

Prohibition of flail-type cutting attachments for portable hand-held brush cutters

In accordance with Commission Decision 2012/32/EU of 19 January 2012 (OJ L-18 21/01/2012), the placing on the market of flair-type cutting attachments consisting of several linked metal parts for portable hand-held brush cutters, is prohibited from 30 April 2012 since they do not comply with the essential requirements set out in Directive 2006/42/EC. The non conformity with these requirements gives rise to a significant risk of serious or fatal injury to users and other exposed persons.

Further details can be found on the website of the European Committee for Standardisation [6] .

4. Technical standards in single EU Countries

If there is no EU-wide regulation (around 15% of EU product legislation is not harmonized) different specifications may apply in different EU countries.

In such cases, you only have to comply with the regulations in force in your country.

If you can prove that your products meet all the technical and quality requirements in your own country and provide a comparable level of safety, other countries can not prohibit their sale, or require changes or additional testing. That is the principle of mutual recognition.

The governments of the EU countries are obliged to publish their national regulations.

Information on this and more about the principle of mutual recognition can be found in the TRIS database [7] for non-harmonized product legislation.

The national requirements may differ in particular with regard to

• Size / Dimensions

• Mass

• Composition

• Labelling

• Packaging

• Examination

At the product information points, you can find out which technical regulations apply to specific products in each EU country and how you can reach the relevant authorities.

Origin is the ‘economic’ nationality of goods traded in commerce. It is the origin that determines which duties apply to your product when it enters the EU market. The rules of origin are used to determine whether a product may be considered as sufficiently linked to the country from which it is exported to say that it ‘originates’ from there.

To benefit from an EPA preferential tariff (duty-free/quota-free) when exporting to the EU, refer to the EPA’s rules of origin applying to your type of clothing. Be aware that the rules of origin applied to each country are not identical in all cases.

Basic concepts of rules of origin - Goods wholly obtained in your country

For example, cotton originates in your country when it is harvested there. Goods sufficiently transformed in your country

The EU rules of origin define – for each product – the degree of processing that must be carried out in your country for the product to be considered as originating there. Three basic criteria determine if a product was sufficiently transformed in your country:

- Value added rule: you need to compare the customs value of the materials not originating in your country with the ex-work price of your final product.

- Change of tariff classification: compare the product code (four-digit tariff classification) of the materials not originating in your country with the product code of your good.

- Specific requirements: you may use the quoted non-originating materials.

In some cases, the applicable rule may involve a combination of the above criteria.

General information about Economic Partnership Agreements Clothing and the regulations for rules of origins in this sector can be found here. [1]

Rules and proofs of origine for the Trade between the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and the EU can be found here. [2]



[1] trade.ec.europa.eu/doclib/html/151649.htm

Producer and supply chain requirements [1]

By promoting the sustainable and responsible management of supply routes within global value chains, the EU aims to ensure that the choices made by European consumers do n undermine human rights, labour rights, environmental protection or economic opportunity in countries further down the supply chain. With its support in this area, the EU underpins efforts to achieve the post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals , many of which relate directly to sustainability and responsibility in supply chains.

The EU adopts a horizontal approach to policy formulation, based on Trade Policy Coherence for Development, and so ensures that its policies are better aligned towards the goal of greater sustainability in GVCs. Through its Private Sector Engagement efforts, the EU encourages businesses to invest more responsibly by enhancing market rewards for corporate social and environmental responsibility.

EC actions to support responsible business practices, both within Europe and internationally, are based on its Communication on CSR from 2011. This Communication aims to encourage companies to take responsibility for the impact that activities in their value chains have on society and the environment.

These values are also reflected in '

Trade for All

' - the new trade and investment strategy of the European Union - and in the relevant chapters in the EU's trade and investment agreements, including the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPA). The

GSP+

scheme also provides a clear structure for engagement with partner countries on sustainability and responsibility issues

As part of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership (Euromed) , the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan has an Association Agreement with the EU, which grants it:

  • duty-free access to the EU market for manufactured goods
  • preferential treatment for agricultural, processed agricultural and fisheries products.

The agreement progressively establishes a free trade area between the EU and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, in conformity with WTO rules.

The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is covered by the European Neighbourhood Policy , specifically by an Action Plan which aims at further liberalisation of trade with the EU.

EU import procedures [1]

EU customs code

EU customs code is the set of rules covering customs matters in trade with non-EU countries. These rules ensure that customs practices in all EU countries are uniform and transparent. Legislation

Registering as an economic operator (EORI number)

The Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number is a unique identifier, assigned by a customs authority in an EU country to all economic operators (both companies and individuals) persons engaging in activities covered by EU customs legislation. Importers established outside the EU will be assigned an EORI the first time they lodge:

  • a customs declaration
  • an entry summary declaration (ENS)
  • an exit summary declaration (EXS)

Operators use this number in all communications with any EU customs authorities where an EU-based identifier is required, for example in customs declarations.

See also the EORI Guidelines

Entry Summary Declaration (ENS)

The entry summary declaration contains advance cargo information about consignments entering the EU. It must be lodged at the first customs office of entry to the EU by the carrier of the goods (by the carrier of the goods, although in some cases it can be done by the importer-consignee, or a representative of the carrier or importer) - even if the goods are not going to be imported in the EU. The deadline for lodging the ENS depends on the mode of transport carrying the goods:

  • Container maritime cargo: at least 24 hours before loading commences in the foreign port
  • Bulk maritime cargo: at least 4 hours before arrival
  • Short sea shipping: at least 2 hours before arrival
  • Short haul flights (less than 4 hours): at least by the actual time of take off of the aircraft
  • Long haul flights (4 hours or more): at least 4 hours before arrival at the first airport in the customs territory of the EU
  • Road traffic: at least 1 hour before arrival.

Note: The Entry Summary Declaration requires information included in documents originating with the exporter (bill of lading, commercial invoices, etc). Make sure these documents reach the party responsible for lodging the declaration in time! More information about the entry summary declaration . The Union Customs Code has introduced more details on risk analysis to this declaration which are expected to be defined in the coming months.See also: Transit movements electronic map

Customs procedures

When goods arrive at the customs office of entry to the EU, they are placed into temporary storage under customs supervision (no longer than 90 days) until they are assigned one of the following customs procedures (or re-exported):

1. Release for free circulation

Goods are released for consumption once all the import requirements have been met:

  • all applicable tariff duties, VAT and excise duties have been paid
  • all applicable authorisations and certificates (e.g. health requirements) have been presented

2. Special procedures

Goods may be placed under any of the following treatments:

Transit , which comprises external and internal transit:

  • External transit: non-Union goods may be moved from one point to another within the customs territory of the EU without being subject to import duties, other charges related to the import of the goods (i.e. internal taxes) and commercial policy measures. Moving goods to another EU Member State means the customs clearance procedures are transferred to the customs office of destination.
  • Internal transit: Union goods may be moved from one point to another within the customs territory of the EU without any change to their customs status. This includes transporting goods through another territory that is outside the EU customs territory.

Storage , which comprises customs warehousing and free zones:

  • Customs warehousing: non-Union goods may be stored in premises or any other location authorised by the customs authorities and under customs supervision ('customs warehouses') without being subject to import duties, other charges related to the import of the goods and commercial policy measures.
  • Free zones: Member States may designate parts of the customs territory of the Union as free zones. They are special areas within the customs territory of the Union where goods can be introduced free of import duties, other charges (i.e. internal taxes) and commercial policy measures, until they are either assigned another approved customs procedure or re-exported. Goods may also undergo simple operations such as processing and re-packing.

Specific use , which comprises temporary admission and end-use:

  • Temporary admission: Non-Union goods can enter the EU without the payment of import duties, provided they are intended for re-export without being changed. The maximum period for temporary import is two years.
  • End-use: goods may be released for free circulation under a duty exemption or at a reduced rate of duty on account of their specific use.

Processing , which comprises inward and outward processing:

  • Inward processing: Goods can be imported into the EU, without being subject to duties, taxes and formalities, to be processed under customs control and then re-exported. If the finished products are ultimately not exported, they become subject to the applicable duties and formalities.
  • Outward processing: Union goods may be temporarily exported from the customs territory of the Union for processing purposes. The processed goods may be released for free circulation with total or partial relief from import duties.

See also:

Customs declaration - Single Administrative Document (SAD)

Goods are placed under customs-approved treatment or use using the Single Administrative Document (SAD) . The use of SAD has several aims:

  • ensuring openness in national administrative requirements
  • rationalize and reduce administrative documentation
  • reduce the amount of requested information
  • standardize and harmonize data

The SAD can be presented to the customs authorities by the importer or a representative, either electronically (each EU country has its own system) or by delivery directly to the premises of the customs office. The SAD covers the placement of any goods whatever the mode of transport used and under any customs procedure, including:

  • export
  • import
  • transit where the new computerised transit system (NCTS) is not yet used
  • warehouses
  • temporary import
  • inward and outward processing

See also:

Value for Customs purposes

Most customs duties and VAT are expressed as a percentage of the value of the goods being imported. Customs authorities define the value of merchandise for customs purposes based on its commercial value at the point of entry into the EU.

This is defined as the purchase price plus delivery costs up to the point where the goods enter the customs territory. This value does not always equal the price stated on the sales contract and may be subject to specific adjustments.

See also: More information on customs valuation

EU: Documents for customs clearance [1]

1. Commercial Invoice

The commercial invoice is a record or evidence of the transaction between the exporter and the importer. Once the goods are available, the exporter issues a commercial invoice to the importer in order to charge him for the goods. The commercial invoice contains the basic information on the transaction and it is always required for customs clearance.

2. Customs Value Declaration

The Customs Value Declaration is a document, which must be presented to the customs authorities where the value of the imported goods exceeds EUR 20 000. The Customs Value Declaration must be drawn up conforming to form DV 1, whose specimen is laid down in Annex 8 to Regulation (EU) 2016/341 (OJ L-69 15/03/2016) (CELEX 32016R0341) known as UCC Transitional Delegated Act. This form must be presented with the Single Administrative Document (SAD). The main purpose of this requirement is to assess the value of the transaction in order to fix the customs value (taxable value) to apply the tariff duties.

3. Freight Documents (Transport Documentation)

Depending on the means of transport used, the following documents are to be filled in and presented to the customs authorities of the importing European Union (EU) Member State (MS) upon importation in order for the goods to be cleared:

  • Bill of Lading
  • FIATA Bill of Lading
  • Road Waybill (CMR)
  • Air Waybill (AWB)
  • Rail Waybill (CIM)
  • ATA Carnet
  • TIR Carnet

4. Freight Insurance

The insurance is an agreement by which the insured is indemnified in the event of damages caused by a risk covered in the policy. Insurance is all-important in the transport of goods because of their exposure to more common risks during handling, storing, loading or transporting cargo, but also to other rare risks, such as riots, strikes or terrorism.

5. Packing List

The packing list (P/L) is a commercial document accompanying the commercial invoice and the transport documents. It provides information on the imported items and the packaging details of each shipment (weight, dimensions, handling issues, etc.) It is required for customs clearance as an inventory of the incoming cargo.

More information about EU import procedures can be found under this link . [2]

1. A basic requirement for an export success - in addition to a suitable and demanded product as well as good sales or trading partners - is an honest and self-critical assessment of your company. Ask yourself these questions below and discuss them with your business partners and family. We tried to answer some questions at least partially. But first and foremost, your knowledge and initiative is important.

Is the product suitable for export?

Is there enough time available for company management and employees for foreign activities?

Does the company have enough employees for additional activities?

Is the know-how of the employees sufficient?

Are your language skills and / the language skills or of the employees sufficient?

Is there enough capacity to meet an increasing demand if the start was good?

Do other business areas (e.g. product development, other marketing activities) need to be limited to save time and money?

Do you need to build up additional capacities (e.g. production, logistics, accounting, sales, marketing)?

2. Choosing the right target market is also very important. The fact that you are convinced of your product does not automatically mean that it is also the potential customers of the chosen target market.

Is the new foreign market different from the markets you know?

Which specific customer groups do you want to address?

Which (other) needs do the customers have?

How do your products cover these needs?

What prices are paid for comparable products?

How do you want to fit into this price structure?

Are special labeling requirements for your product to be observed?

What financial options do the customers have you want to address?

Which distribution channels you can use to reach these customers?

Which competitors are there in the target market?

Are you familiar with the customs (payment methods, traditional delivery and insurance conditions, cultural features) of the target market?

Is your target market really the right one?

3. Sales abroad - at least in the start-up phase - will be unsuccessful without reliable partners in the target market.

How do you find customers or business partners in the target market?

How do you plan your customer and business partner relationship management?

How can you distribute your products successfully in the target market?

What should you pay attention to during business talks?

4. It's always about the money. Before you make money with the export, you first have to spend money. Check your budget, to make an honest decision: can you even afford the export?

What financial resources are available to you?

Which budget do you plan for your export activities (a budget set in advance makes the step abroad financially calculable even in the case of a failure)?

Are you liquid enough to finance the foreign engagement?

Can you use or finance unused capacity in the event of a sluggish course (e.g. in the start-up phase)?

Do you need to translate, print and distribute promotional materials?

Do you have to pay for consultants and interpreters?

5. No risk, no fun, as it is jokingly called, but a risk assessment is indispensable.

Are there any financial sponsorship programs or special export promotion programs for your products?

Are there any insurance policies that reduce the risk of exports?

How will export affect the financial situation of your company?

Some (in any case incomplete) answers

Is the new foreign market different from the markets you know? How do you find customers or business partners in the target market?

There are different possibilities.

Attend international fairs in your country that are relevant to your product - you probably do that anyway.

Go to exhibitors from your target market and get in touch.

Check which trade fairs take place in the destination country that are relevant to your product - for example, via the AUMA.[1] Consider whether it is worth visiting. You should not immediately think about presenting yourself as an exhibitor (these are unnecessary costs in the first step). See such trade shows as an opportunity to engage with potential distributors and get to know potential competitors. Incidentally, you can also easily get an idea about the offer and prices in the relevant stores of the target market.

Good sources of information are also bilateral chambers in your country or other foreign business organizations. For example, German Chambers of Commerce abroad usually publish product-specific inquiries from Germany free of charge on their websites, so use the online offers of the foreign chambers.

If there is no chamber representation of the target market in your country, look for contact with the embassy of the target market in your country. As a rule, there is an economic officer in every embassy who will gladly advise you. Apart from that, contacts to the embassy of the destination country are always worthwhile...

German and other foreign chambers of commerce also offer targeted address research and support in contacting them. Consider whether you should accept bids to help you get in touch, even though they are usually chargeable. Let's be honest: It makes a difference whether a company representative unknown until then by the potential distribution partner or an official institution of the target market announces itself.

Maintain contacts to companies from the target market, located in your country - also via chambers and trade associations. Even if they have nothing to do with your product at first glance: Relationships only harm those who have none. You get first-hand information about the destination country and who knows, maybe the person you are talking to will have interesting contacts in your industry.

How do you plan your customer and business partner relationship management?

Making contacts is relatively easy; maintaining business contacts over a longer period of time is much more difficult. But doing business with an existing client is much easier and cheaper than constantly recruiting. The following tips make it easier to maintain contacts:

Information: Inform your customers about changes - new contact persons or direct dial numbers, new products and locations, new distribution channels or export successes. It also encourages customers to share similar information with you. So you stay up to date. Also inform foreign customers about changed funding opportunities or new export regulations.You show that you do not just want to do current business: In the sense of a holistic customer relationship you have the well-being of the customer in mind.

Personal: Do not hesitate to collect personal information about your most important business partners: birthdays, family, hobbies, etc. This gives you the opportunity to stay in contact outside the business relationship - on a very personal level.

Invitations: Invite customers over and over again when there is something new or when you are presenting at a trade fair or similar.

Cultural features: If you have foreign customers, it is important to know the customs of the exporting country more closely. When are holidays? Which gifts are usual? Take advantage of these opportunities to be remembered as an attentive business partner.

Spontaneity: Do not be afraid to call "spontaneously" if, for example, an important intermediate step has been reached in order processing. Your customer will be grateful to you, because he always feels sufficiently informed.

Business environment: Maintain contacts not only with your actual business partners, but also with your Business environment. Secretary, assistant or important employees are decisive multipliers for future orders.

It is difficult to give universal rules and guidelines for the European Union - we are talking about 28 countries and 28 different nations, each with very different cultural habits and different business cultures.

Therefore, here are just a few general rules.

Preparing for export means preparing for new business encounters. Remember that first impressions can only be made once and that being unprepared for a meeting, or not knowing what are the norms and customs of your business partner, can decrease your chance of establishing a business relationship. The following tips will help you when preparing to meet with a European business partner.

Be well prepared. This counts in terms of having an agenda for the meeting, sufficient business cards, a pricelist of your products, and informing yourself about your business partner.

Think about how you can deliver your products, how many, and how quickly, to the potential customer. Know the business culture. There are differences in language, culture and business practices in the different EU countries. Familiarizing yourself with the country’s customs and habits is important. Know something about the local politics or sports.

Having a few introductory talking points can go far in setting the right mood for the business meeting.

Define what the goal is of your meeting. Clearly defining what you want to get out of a meeting or visit will provide clarity to you and your business partner. This can be anything from a general introduction to finalizing a sale.

Translate your business cards and catalogue into the local language. This will impress your customers and shows that you are serious about doing business there. To avoid possible embarrassment, get all translations double checked by a native speaker.

Have information brochures or flyers about your company and products. Make sure your information material is easy to read and informative. Include any customer testimonials you have. Having product samples with you can be helpful in demonstrating the quality or uniqueness of your product. In addition, ensure your business is easily available to your international clients.

Give follow-up to the agreed action points. To a large extent doing business is about trust. Earning this trust through keeping your word is one of the easiest ways of creating a good business relationship. However, don’t make promises you can’t keep.

Further information on business culture in Germany, Belgium, The Netherlands, France, Austria and Luxembourg can be found at this link.[1] More about life and business in the EU can be found here.[2]

Are there any financial sponsorship programs or special export promotion programs for your products?

Here you should talk with banks from the target market, if they are represented in your country and of course with your house bank. Chambers and business associations are other good contacts. It is important to have contact with international development cooperation organizations. These can provide information on ongoing projects in your industry and related funding opportunities. Use the discussions with the international development cooperation organizations to obtain information on other organizations, such as foreign foundations, where further information on potential export subsidies is available.

Austria - Austro – Arab Chamber of Commerce

www.aacc.at

Belgium - Arab – Belgian – Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce

www.ablcc.org

Belgium - Brussels office Arab – Belgian – Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce

www.ablcc.org

Belgium – FEDERATION OF CHAMBERS OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY OF BELGIUM

http://belgianchambers.be/en/

Bulgaria – BULGARIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY

www.bcci.bg

CBI – Centre for the Promotion of Imports from developing countries

https://www.cbi.eu/

Croatia – CROATIAN CHAMBER OF ECONOMY (HRVATSKA GOSPODARSKA KOMORA)

www.hgk.hr

Cyprus – CYPRUS CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY

www.ccci.org.cy

Czech Republic – CZECH CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

https://www.komora.cz/en/

Denmark – CONFEDERATION OF DANISH ENTERPRISE (DANSK ERHVERV)

www.danskerhverv.dk

Estonia – ESTONIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY

https://www.koda.ee/en

EU Trade Helpdesk

https://trade.ec.europa.eu/tradehelp/

France - Arab Franco Chamber of Commerce

www.ccfranco-arabe.org

France – CCI FRANCE Jordanie France – CAFRAJ

www.cafraj.com

Germany – ASSOCIATION OF GERMAN CHAMBERS OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE (DEUTSCHER INDUSTRIE- UND HANDELSKAMMERTAG – DIHK)

www.dihk.de

Germany - Chambre Algéro-Allemande de Commerce et d'Industrie

http://algerien.ahk.de

Germany - Chambre Allemande de Commerce et d'Industrie au Maroc

http://marokko.ahk.de

Germany - Chambre Tuniso-Allemande de l'Industrie et du Commerce

http://tunesien.ahk.de

Germany - German-Arab Chamber of Industry and Commerce

https://aegypten.ahk.de/en/

Germany - German-Saudi Arabian Liaison Office for Economic Affairs (GESALO)

http://saudiarabien.ahk.de

Germany – Ghorfa Arab – German Chamber of Commerce & Industry

www.ghorfa.de

Germany - The German Industry and Commerce (UAE)

https://vae.ahk.de/