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Radio and telecommunications terminal equipment

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Radio and telecommunications terminal equipment

This Directive establishes the regulatory framework for the placing on the market, free movement and putting into service in the European Union (EU) of radio equipment and telecommunications terminal equipment. The aim of this Directive is to create an open and competitive single market. It also aims to ensure a high level of health and safety protection, and to avoid harmful interference.

ACT

Directive 1999/5/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 9 March 1999 on radio equipment and telecommunications terminal equipment and the mutual recognition of their conformity [See amending acts].

SUMMARY

This Directive is intended to encourage rapid dissemination of innovative technology and thus promote competition in the internal market for telecommunications.

Scope

The Directive applies to radio equipment * and telecommunications terminal equipment *. The Directive also applies where this equipment :

  • incorporates, as an integral part or as an accessory, a medical device within the meaning of Directive 93/42/EEC on medical devices;
  • incorporates, as an integral part or as an accessory, an active implantable medical device within the meaning of Directive 90/385/EEC on active implantable medical devices;
  • constitutes a component or a separate technical unit of a vehicle, within the meaning of Directive 72/245/EEC relating to radio interference caused by motor vehicles;
  • constitutes a component or a separate technical unit of a vehicle, within the meaning of Directive 2002/24/EC relating to the type-approval of two- or three-wheel motor vehicles.

The Directive does not apply to apparatus exclusively used for activities concerning public security, defence, State security and the activities of the State in the area of criminal law; nor does it apply to:

  • radio equipment used by radio amateurs, except when it is commercially available fully assembled;
  • equipment covered by Directive 96/98/EC relating to marine equipment;
  • wires and cables;
  • radio equipment intended to be used solely for the reception of sound and TV broadcasting services;
  • products, equipment or components within the meaning of Council Regulation (EEC) No 3922/91 relating to the field of civil aviation;

Essential requirements and harmonised European standards

Member States must ensure that apparatus complies with the essential requirements of the Directive where it is properly installed, maintained and used, which is a condition for its being placed on the market.

The following essential requirements are applicable to the apparatus:

  • protection of the health and safety of the user and any other person, including the security provisions laid down in Directive 2006/95/EC, relating to electrical equipment designed for use within certain voltage limits (but with no lower voltage limit);
  • electromagnetic compatibility as per Directive 2004/108/EC;
  • use of the spectrum allocated to terrestrial/space radiocommunication and to orbital resources, which make it possible to avoid harmful interference.

When an apparatus is in conformity with harmonised European standards, in accordance with the procedures established by Directive 98/34/EC, the Member States presume that the current Directive’s requirements have been met.

Information and notification

Member States shall ensure that the manufacturers or the persons responsible for placing the apparatus on the market provide information on its use in the documentation or packaging, together with the declaration of conformity with the essential requirements.

More specifically, for radio equipment, this information must be sufficient to identify on the packaging and in the instructions for use of the apparatus the Member States or the geographical area within a Member State where the equipment is intended to be used.

For telecommunications terminal equipment, such information must identify the interfaces of the public telecommunications networks to which the equipment is intended to be connected.

CE marking

Apparatus which complies with all the essential requirements bears the CE conformity marking. Manufacturers identify their apparatus by stating its type, batch and/or serial numbers and by the name of the manufacturer or of the person responsible for placing the apparatus on the market.

If a notified body has been consulted by the manufacturer regarding the equipment's conformity with the Directive, its number accompanies the CE marking.

In its Decision 2000/299/EC of 6 April 2000, the Commission established a class of radio equipment and telecommunications terminal equipment that cannot be used everywhere in the EU (as in the case of non-harmonised national frequency plans). This type of equipment must bear a corresponding warning mark along side the CE marking.

Placing on the market and free movement

Member States must not prohibit, restrict or impede the placing on the market and putting into service on their territory of any apparatus if it complies with the essential requirements and other provisions of the Directive.

If a Member State decides that apparatus does not meet the requirements of this Directive, it may prohibit, interrupt or restrict the placing on the market and also the putting into service of that apparatus.

Putting into service and the safeguard clause

Member States may restrict the putting into service of radio equipment only for reasons relating to the efficient and appropriate use of the radio spectrum, the need to avoid harmful interference, or public health issues.

If a Member State decides that an apparatus does not satisfy the requirements of the safeguard clause, it may take measures to withdraw it from service, to prohibit its being in service or to restrict its free movement.

Conformity assessment and notified bodies

This Directive lays down the procedures from which the manufacturer may choose for assessing conformity with the essential requirements for different types of equipment. Member States notify the Commission of the bodies they have designated to carry out the conformity assessment procedures.

If the manufacturer so chooses, the procedures for assessing conformity with essential requirements in Directive 73/23/EEC and Directive 89/336/EEC may also be used for assessing conformity with the respective requirements of those directives.

Key terms used in the act

  • Radio equipment: a product, or component thereof, capable of communication by means of the emission and/or reception of radio waves utilising the spectrum allocated to terrestrial/space radio communication.
  • Telecommunications terminal equipment: a product, or a component of a product, which is intended to be connected directly or indirectly to interfaces of public telecommunications networks.
  • Apparatus: any radio equipment, telecommunications terminal equipment, or both.

References

Act

Entry into force

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal

Directive 1999/5/EC

7.4.1999

7.4.2000

OJ L 91 of 7.4.1999

Amending act(s)

Entry into force

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 1882/2003.

20.11.2003

-

OJ L 284 of 31.10.2003

Regulation (EC) No 596/2009

18.6.2009

-

OJ L 188 of 18.7.2009

Successive amendments and corrections to Directive 2000/29/EEC have been incorporated into the basic text. This consolidated version is for reference only.

RELATED ACTS

Reports

Report from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament of 9 February 2010 - second Progress Report on the operation of Directive 1999/5/EC, on radio equipment and telecommunications terminal equipment and the mutual recognition of their conformity [COM(2010) 43 final - Not published in the Official Journal].

This Report describes the operation of Directive 1999/5/EC with a view to its future revision.

The Report notes that the objectives of the Directive have been achieved in terms of:

Last updated: 03.08.2010

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