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Placing British manufactured goods on the EU Market – the CE marking requirement

The following outlines the new regulations UK traders need to observe when placing manufactured goods on the EU market. From the 1st January 2021, UK exporters need to check whether their goods will be required to comply with CE marking regulations.

What is CE Marking?

It is an administrative marking used by manufacturer or importers to confirm their goods conform with European health, safety, and environmental protection standards for products sold within the European Economic Area (EEA). It is not a quality indicator or a certification mark.

The letters “CE” are added on products traded in the European Economic Area (EEA). It does not mean that they are made in Europe, but it indicates the goods’ compliance with EU legislation and authorises the free movement of products within the European market.

In other words, the products can be traded in the EEA without other restriction, and it assures consumers that the goods meet high safety, health and environmental protection requirements.

Do all products require being CE marked?

Not all goods must have CE marking; it concerns only products subject to specific rules. The marking is mandatory for more than 20 product categories including toys, appliances burning gaseous fuels, construction products, measuring instruments, mobile phones, lifts etc.

How does it work?

  • First, you have to identify the directive(s) and harmonised standard relevant to the products.

  • Then you need to check the product-specific requirements and determine whether an independent conformity assessment is required.

  • Subsequently, you must test the products and their conformity. If the goods are manufactured, you will need to establish the correct documentation required by the directives. Finally, you will attach the CE marking to your product or its packaging.

  • You also must check whether you require a Conformity Assessment Body and if you are using an UK based one, whether they have any arrangement in place with EU counterparts to help you with CE markings. If not, you must find one based in Europe. For further guidance and find a list of notified bodies, click here


The goods will be safer for the user and this may reduce damage claims. Additionally, this is a globally recognized standard for the safety and protection of products.

Need further information?

For more information, you can check the Europa website and have a look at the EC New Approach Directives guidance.

Need help understanding the nee requirements?

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