COM(2014) 500 final
COMMUNICATION FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, THE COUNCIL AND THE EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COMMITTEE
The annual Union work programme for European standardisation for 2015
Europe’s goal is to create growth and jobs in a smart, sustainable and inclusive way through the Europe 2020 strategy and its flagship initiatives. The importance of standardisation for jobs, growth and economic recovery was reiterated in the Commission’s Industrial Policy Communication “For a European Industrial Renaissance”, which stressed the need for the European standardisation system to contribute in the field of industrial policy, innovation and technological development. It identified six fast-growing areas for priority action: advanced manufacturing technologies, key enabling technologies, bio-based products, sustainable industrial policy, construction and raw materials, clean vehicles, and smart grids.
The positive effects of standardisation are well known and recognised. However to ensure that Europe’s standardisation system can meet today’s challenges, the Commission proposed a reform package in 2011 including a new Regulation on European standardisation which took effect from 1 January 2013. This reform aimed at increasing the system’s inclusiveness, speed, responsiveness, transparency, flexibility and scope.
One innovation of the reform is the obligation for the Commission to adopt an annual Union work programme for European standardisation (hereinafter referred to as "UWP"), which identifies strategic priorities for European standardisation on the basis of the policy objectives set by the Commission in its planning. This Communication, which is adopted for the second year running, identifies those priority domains where the Commission has intentions to use European standardisation as a policy tool in support of the Union's new or existing legislation and policies in the course of 2015. The intentions may lead in the future to formal standardisation requests (mandates) to the European standardisation organisations (ESOs) – CEN, CENELEC and ETSI, however leaving room also for standardisation related preliminary or ancillary actions invited or initiated by the Commission without mandates.
Considering the private nature of European standardisation the practical implementation (i.e. standardisation) of all these priorities and actions remain always under the responsibility, willingness and discretion of the ESOs. The role of the Commission remains to initiate European standardisation activities through standardisation requests or other actions and providing Union funding for European standardisation where it supports Union's priorities.
The orientations indicated in the work programme do not have a budgetary impact over and above of what is already foreseen for the year 2015. The outcome of negotiations for the 2014-2020 European Financial Framework has been a serious reduction of the Commission’s budget. This has an impact on the annual budget and in 2014 the budget line for standardisation has been reduced by 25,56% from 2013. Consequently, the challenge is to share this burden among the different kinds of expenditure and organisations, keeping in mind the strategic objectives of the Union’s standardisation policy.
The publication of this Union work programme increases efficiency and transparency and facilitates a better forward planning of standardisation work.
The Commission has launched at the end of 2013 the Independent review of the European standardisation system. The first phase of the report which concerns the fact finding has been completed in June. The next phase concerns analysis of the facts and the conclusions. The results will be available by the end of the year.
The results of the Independent review will be considered by the Commission in its reports pursuant to articles 24 and 25 of the Regulation which it will submit to the European Parliament and to the Council in 2015.
Some items of the 2014 UWP have been taken over in this document, setting the priorities for 2015. These items have been identified in continuous and consensual discussions with the European Standardisation Organisations also involving other stakeholders. In addition, some standards in support of EU legislation still depend on adoption of the acts they will be based upon by the co-legislator. As a result the Commission proposes a rescheduling of some items already listed in the 2014 UWP.
2.Strategic Priorities for European Standardisation
The European Council of March 2014 emphasised the need of a strong and competitive industrial base, in terms of both production and investment, as a key driver for economic growth and jobs. According to the European Council the Commission Communication "For a European Industrial Renaissance" provides important input in this respect and sets out the Commission’s key priorities for industrial policy.
These priorities will be achieved by:
completing the integration of networks: information networks, energy and transport
achieving a more open and integrated internal market in goods and services
improving the business environment, regulatory framework and public administration in the EU
stimulating investment in innovation and new technologies
increasing productivity and resource efficiency and facilitating access to affordable production inputs
upgrading skills and facilitating industrial change
supporting small and medium enterprises and entrepreneurship
supporting internationalisation of EU firms, in particular SMEs
The European Standardisation System contributes to Europe’s strategic objectives, in particular in the field of industrial policy, services, innovation and technological development.
The Commission has examined which of the actions described in the Communication are ready for the development of standards in 2015.
In this context, the Commission has identified in the below listed fields its strategic priorities for European standardisation where it intends to ask from the European standardisation organisations the development of standards.
2.1.Bio-based products including biofuels
Pre-and co-normative research for the development of test methods applicable to the measurement of bio-based content, functionalities, environmental attributes and profiles of bio-based products e.g. bio-based polymers, lubricants, solvents and surfactants, is also to be considered ensuring coherent and coordinated progress.
In addition to the on-going standardisation work in the field of biofuels the Commission is examining areas in relation to bio-based products where new technical specifications and test methods in bioenergy would be needed.
Under the Horizon 2020 "Secure, clean and efficient energy" Work Programme 2014-2015 the Commission aims to ask within the first quarter of 2015 for the programming and development of standards on algae and their products.
Under the same Horizon 2020 Work Programme, but for "Food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry, marine and maritime and inland water research, and the bioeconomy" the Commission is asking for the development and promotion of the use of common environmental and functional/performance based specifications, including the need for standardised measurement and testing methodologies, which could be used to support public procurement networks on innovative bio-based products.
2.2.Construction products and construction
The development of certain new product standards, e.g. for innovative products and the amendment of existing standards necessary for the implementation of Regulation (EU) 305/2011 should be completed. Certain regulated aspects, e.g. accessibility of construction works, sustainable use of natural resources must be included in harmonised European product standards.
The development of assessment methods for regulated dangerous substances and the emission of radiation must be finalised and the new assessment methods should be gradually introduced in product standards.
To enhance the competitiveness of EU construction services the Commission will promote the further development and the international uptake of Eurocodes’ structural design standards under the Action Plan on the Sustainable Competitiveness of the Construction Sector.
The Commission is examining the needs for standardisation on geothermal energy related issues.
With regards to indoor air quality, the standardisation of Radon measurements in dwellings should also be considered.
The Commission aims to issue the standardisation requests within the third quarter of 2015.
In respect of the actions set out in the Commission Communication "Roadmap to a Resource Efficient Europe", standards related to resource efficiency such as recyclability, recoverability and reusability indexes or durability of products or its key components as well as other environmental parameters needs to be developed, so as to facilitate the characterisation of potential ecodesign requirements in additional areas.
Further standardisation requests in support of Commission Regulations implementing the Ecodesign Directive (e.g. ventilation systems, space and water heaters, networked standby for networked and networking equipment) will be issued as individual mandates.
Where the Commission considers it likely that new measures (i.e. Commission Regulations or Commission Delegated Regulations) on Ecodesign and/or Energy Labelling will be proposed for products under the Ecodesign Working Plan 2012-14, new standardisation requests in these fields could be issued.
The Commission aims to issue the standardisation requests within the second quarter of 2015.
The implementation of action referred to in point 22.214.171.124 of the Commission’s Communication COM(2013)561 (hereinafter referred to as the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme) is still to be considered as part of this UWP except for the reference to waste characterisation for hazardous property H 12 – release of an acute toxic gas category 1, 2 or 3, where a mandate is under preparation.
The Commission aims to issue the standardisation requests within the first quarter of 2015.
With the actions set out in the "Roadmap for completing the single market for parcel delivery" the Commission aims to support the development of e-commerce by improving parcel delivery, notably cross border. One set of actions promotes enhanced interoperability of parcel-delivery operations. The Commission aims to issue, within the first quarter of 2015, a standardisation request concerning the specific features of parcel delivery services and, may also consider including within this standardisation request the revision of any existing European Standards on postal services if necessary.
2.6.Air quality and industrial emissions
The Directive relating to arsenic, cadmium, mercury, nickel and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons requires the monitoring of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH). In order to ensure better data comparability, validated standard methods for PAH are required.
The Directive on industrial emissions empowers the Commission to introduce continuous monitoring of emissions of polychlorinated dibenzo-dioxins and –furans (PCDD/PCDF) from waste incineration plants as soon as appropriate measurement techniques are available. The Commission expects to send a mandate to the ESOs in the course of 2015 for the completion of the validation of the existing technical specifications in this field.
3.Standardisation needs in other fields
3.1.Innovation and new technologies
3.1.1.Advanced manufacturing technologies
The Commission will work closely with the European standardisation organisations to systematically address results of screenings and foresight exercises on advanced manufacturing in their work programme and to further identify and address standardisation gaps taking into account the work of the Commission’s Task Force on Advanced Manufacturing for Clean Production.
3.1.2.Key enabling technologies (KETs)
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.1.2 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
3.1.3.Sustainable industrial policy, construction and raw materials
The implementation of the action referred to in point 126.96.36.199 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
188.8.131.52.Non-energy, non-agricultural, raw materials
The Commission has identified in its Strategic Implementation Plan a number of areas where standardisation is required.
The European Innovation Partnership (EIP) on Raw Materials will work on common standards for waste recycling and for data reporting on exploration, mineral production, trade, reserves and resources
3.1.4.Clean vehicles and vessels
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.1.5 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
3.1.5.Smart grids and smart metering
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.1.6 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
In addition to a previous standardisation mandate M/490 in support of European Smart Grid deployment the European Innovation Partnership on Smart Cities will develop a common landscape and a strategic programme for smart city standards.
3.2.Strengthening the internal market in goods and services
3.2.1.Role of European standards as part of the regulatory framework
European standards adopted on the basis of requests made by the Commission for the application of Union legislation are already a vital part of the regulatory framework for products. In order to ensure that European standards, and in particular harmonised standards, can maintain their position as a recognised reference point in ensuring compliance with the Union’s legislation – not only for products but also for services – a coherent and fully reviewed approach is needed in implementing the new legal requirements of the 2012 Standardisation Regulation. To ensure this the Commission will revise its guidance for drafting, adopting and executing standardisation requests focusing in particular on SME friendliness, transparency, quality and clarity of harmonised standards. In addition, the Commission intends to update mandate M/417 concerning standards relating to conformity assessment activities so they can continue to serve as a recognised reference for the accreditation of conformity assessment bodies, including those working in the framework of EU harmonisation legislation.
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.1 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
The Commission may request the development of European standards for children's clothing and accessories as well as for childrens’ shoes.
3.2.3.Safety of other consumer products
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.2 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
The Commission may request the development of European standards for buoyant aids for swimming, roller skates (and similar equipment) and paragliding equipment.
3.2.4.Feed and food quality and safety
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.3 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
Furthermore, in order to ensure fair trade and a high level of safety when using methods alternative to the ISO international standards, it is of utmost importance to clearly set the requirements for certification bodies assessing equivalence and certificates to be released.
Under the Tobacco Products Directive which entered into force on 19 May 2014, the Commission is considering the development of technical standards for electronic cigarettes, in particular their refill mechanism.
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.4 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
3.2.7.Fibre composition of textile products
Under the Textile Regulation and the REACH Regulation , the Commission may request standardisation activities with regard to finished textile products, namely in areas such as the non-destructive identification of textile fibres, the integration of non-textile elements, the determination of flammability and the identification of the presence (or absence) of allergenic substances.
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.6 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
3.2.9.Safety of offshore machinery
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.7 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
Under the European Electronic Toll Service (EETS) deployment the following further standardisation activities would be beneficial: test standards for the secure monitoring of toll systems and for profiles of information exchange between Service Provision and Toll Charging activities, and revision of the test standards forming the basis of satellite-based electronic tolling systems and the profile standard for Dedicated Short-Range Communications (DSRC) -based electronic tolling.
In order to implement new legislation on Digital Tachographs and on Weights and Dimensions an additional standard on DSRC is needed to allow the transmission of data from a moving vehicle to an enforcement police officer on the roadside, through the DSRC interface.
Another issue is related to onboard weighing systems for trucks, where different providers may equip the tractor and the trailers which it will tow. An interface standard is required between the different suppliers to ensure that the onboard weighing computer in the tractor will be able to receive the weights per axles of any trailer, store them, and then compute the whole weight of the vehicle. This standard could be based upon ISO 11992.
The Commission aims, through the e-Freight policy initiative, to electronically link logistics stakeholders along the whole supply chain and to facilitate the flow, access and use of information. The objective is to enhance efficiency and reduce costs of freight transport operations.
In this framework, the Commission may request standardisation activities.
Within the field of waterborne transport, technical solutions and standards are based on both European and international requirements. The Commission is considering to issue a standardisation request to the ESOs concerning the development of standards for maritime transport information sharing in support of the e-Maritime initiative and in order to support the implementation of the National Single Windows and electronic transmission of data towards other relevant systems, in particular the Union Maritime Information and Exchange System, SafeSeaNet. In this context a close link with e-Freight, e-Customs and e-Navigation initiatives will be established.
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.8 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
However, as regards the modernisation of the European air traffic management network, the ESOs will be requested to review existing standards and their continuation, and to develop, in cooperation with the European Organisation for Civil Aviation Equipment (EUROCAE) and the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), future possible activity and the relevant necessary European standards identified in the European ATM Master Plan and in the common projects supporting the implementation of the Master Plan.
In line with its Communication on remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) in a safe and sustainable manner the Commission identified the need to develop a strategy for RPAS at European level. This includes the definition of an appropriate regulatory framework, which could be supported by standards developed by the ESOs or international standardisation organisations, in cooperation with EUROCAE and EASA.
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.9 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP with the addition of the following areas for development of European standards:
Harmonised communication vehicle/ground area, to close open points in technical specifications for interoperability (TSIs);
Development of the universal overhead contact line (OCL), following the results of the specific study on this matter commissioned by the European Rail Agency;
Development of European standards for railway applications including 1520mm track gauge railway system taking into account the Russian interstate standards (GOST) and focusing on the purpose and scope of the Interoperability Directive.
3.2.15.Alternative fuels and related infrastructure
Standardisation will be needed to implement the Clean Power for Transport package, including the European Alternative Fuels Strategy and the proposal for a Directive on the deployment of alternative fuels infrastructure.
The Commission is keen to support faster market introduction of advanced concepts by harmonisation and development of standards for photovoltaic technology. The Commission is examining areas related to alternative fuels where further standardisation would be needed.
3.2.16.Safety of infrastructure
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.11 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.12 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP and the following items are added:
(1)accessories interworking with radio equipment, specifically a common charging interface for mobile and other portable electronic devices;
(2)access of mobile telephones and other portable radio equipment to Galileo services;
(3)enforcement of systems designed to guarantee that software supporting certain features can only be loaded into the radio equipment where the compliance of the combination of software and the radio equipment has been demonstrated;
(4)mobile communication services in the 700 MHz and the lower UHF band so as to ensure co-existence with other applications and electrical equipment' as follow: 'Wireless broadband communication services in the UHF (470-790 MHz) band so as to ensure co-existence with other applications, including non-radio, and electrical equipment.
3.2.18.Space at the service of citizens
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.13 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.14 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
3.2.20.Nuclear Safety and Security
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.15 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.16 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
Under the Water Framework Directive and sister legislation, the Commission is considering the development of standards for analytical methods for water pollutants and certain biological and microbiological parameters.
3.2.22.Safety of specific services
This work item is subject to the outcome of a broad consultation of stakeholders provisionally scheduled for the second half of 2014. If input from stakeholders leads to the conclusion that service standardisation needs in the field of consumer safety e.g. on hotel fire safety, would receive wide support, this option should be kept open.
Patients require safe, high quality services in order to have confidence in healthcare systems throughout Europe. To develop European Standards, clinicians and representatives of regulatory authorities, research and development as well as accreditation and standardisation organisations should bring together their knowledge and experience. In order to manage complex healthcare systems in a consistent manner, specific horizontal aspects could be subject to standardisation requests to CEN in line with relevant Union legislation and policies on healthcare.
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.2.20 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
Once the future Regulation on Medical Devices and the Regulation on in vitro diagnostic Medical Devicesare adopted by the European Parliament and by the Council, the European Commission will issue a mandate inviting CEN and CENELEC to verify to what extent the Essential Requirements and other requirements contained in the future regulations are covered by standards.
In the framework of the Measuring Instruments Directive, the Commission may mandate the ESOs to produce standards in the light of the state of international standardisation and market needs. This would concern instruments covered by the scope of the directive for which after the last change to the Directive no full harmonised standard exists, or due to technological innovation only, incomplete and/or out-dated harmonised standards exist.
In order to promote the take-up of European harmonised standards in the pressure equipment sector and to ensure the long-term sustainability of these standards, further actions will be undertaken to promote the visibility and facilitate the take-up of the main standards for pressure vessels, piping and boilers.
3.2.28.Electrical and electronic equipment
The following items may be the subject of specific standardisation requests:
(1)aspects not covered in and possible shortcomings in the current harmonised standards supporting the safety objectives of the Low Voltage Directive;
(2)safety aspects of electrical products that due to their characteristics e.g. child appealing, may be unsafe for segments of the population that are particularly vulnerable.
3.2.29.Water transport – Recreational craft
The Recreational Craft Directive has been recently revised therefore development and updating of harmonised standards shall be made via a new mandate.
The following items may be the subject of specific standardisation requests or new mandates if necessary:
(3)recreational craft — reciprocating internal combustion engines’ exhaust emissions measurement — test-bed measurement of gaseous and particulate exhaust emissions;
(4)safety aspects of electrical circuits with respect to electric or hybrid propulsion systems;
(5)aspects not covered in and possible shortcomings in the current harmonised standards supporting the safety objectives of the Recreational Craft Directive.
The Commission may ask that test and certification procedures for the fire-proofing of composite materials to be used on vessels are developed with the aim of fostering their acceptance in International Maritime Organization. This may lead to specific standardisation related actions.
3.2.30.Safety in workplace
The enforcement of the Directive on the minimum health and safety requirements regarding the exposure of workers to the risks arising from physical agents (electromagnetic fields) repeals Directive 2004/40/EC.
The Commission envisages either to amend the existing mandate M/351 or to issue a new mandate to the European standardisation organisations to develop harmonised standards in support of Directive 2013/35/EU.
The recent Communication on the defence and security sectors highlighted that the use of common defence standards greatly enhances co-operation and interoperability as well as the competitiveness of Europe's industry especially in emerging technologies. This approach was supported by the European Council in its Conclusions on the Common Security & Defence Policy of 19th December 2013. The Commission will be working with the European Defence Agency to examine ways to promote the use of common standards in defence and in other areas referred to in the Communication. Any work taken forward in this area would not duplicate NATO activities.
The Commission will be working to examine ways to promote the use of common standards in maritime affairs. This work will support inter alia the Commission's initiative on the Common Information Sharing Environment for the surveillance of the EU maritime domain (Maritime CISE) and in particular defence-civil cooperation.
Of particular importance is the enhancement of information exchange between different sectorial functions, in particular between defence and other sectors, by making maritime surveillance systems interoperable through the use of common standards.
3.3.Digital Agenda for Europe
Standards are indispensable for interoperability between ICT products, services, applications and digital content which is crucial for building an effective digital society. Given the global nature of the ICT market, cooperation between the ESOs and relevant fora and consortia is needed to cope with the ever-growing demand for standards to support interoperability in this fast evolving domain.
The rolling plan for ICT standardisation identifies in greater detail the areas where standards could help achieve ICT-related policy objectives including through complementary interoperability testing and awareness actions to ensure the effective uptake of standards.
Studies show that European and international standards are often not specific enough to ensure interoperability of ICT solutions in eHealth. Seeking the endorsement of the eHealth Network and consulting the eHealth Stakeholders’ Group, more detailed specifications, including interoperability testing guidelines and quality management systems, for the cross-border exchange of data (i.e. in patient summaries or ePrescription), to be used e.g. in public procurement, will be identified to contribute to the eHealth Interoperability Framework.
The Commission proposes to boost interoperability by further developing and validating specifications and components and, if necessary, through standardisation mandates.
3.3.2.Radio frequency identification (RFID)
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.4.2 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
3.3.3.eSkills and eLearning
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.4.3 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
3.3.4.Online dispute resolution (ODR) for eCommerce
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.4.6 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
3.3.5.The Internet of Things (IoT)
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.4.7 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
3.3.6.Electronic identification and trust services including electronic signatures
The Council is expected to adopt in the second half of 2014 a Regulation on electronic identification and trust services for electronic transactions in the internal market. It will replace the Directive on electronic signatures, and will expand its scope to address electronic identification, signatures, seals, timestamps, delivery, documents or website authentication certificates. A new standardisation request may be needed to support its implementation.
3.3.7.Card, internet and mobile payments
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.4.9 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
3.3.8.Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS)
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.4.10 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
The Commission is considering issuing a standardisation request to develop standards for the future generation eCall services, taking into account the evolution of mobile communication networks and the IP environment and also considering a wider range of vehicle types and services, such as Heavy Duty Vehicles, Power Two Wheelers or Hazardous Goods tracking.
3.3.9.Broadband infrastructure mapping
The European Parliament and the Council recently adopted Directive 2014/61/EU on measures to reduce the cost of deploying high-speed electronic communications networks. In this context, information about physical infrastructures available in the area of deployment should be made available.
The Commission may consider a standardisation request for a common language available for use by Regulatory Authorities, Ministries and Operators/Utilities and include a set of successive standardised layers of authorization, details, type (service, infrastructure, demand, investment maps…). This standard for broadband infrastructure mapping should benefit as much as possible from the INSPIRE technical guidance for regulation 1253/2013 .
e-Procurement technology interoperability and standardisation is a key strategy to remove technical barriers or extra costs when suppliers bid on a plurality of systems. In order to achieve a true single market, bidders including SMEs ideally should be able to communicate and participate, in multiple markets across various systems, through their favourite or a common system. The need for standardisation in the e-Procurement domain was strongly reaffirmed by the e-Tendering Expert (eTEG) group in a report issued in February 2013, which included a number of standardisation actions to be undertaken as soon as possible.
3.3.11.Online gambling services
As announced in the Communication "Towards a comprehensive European framework for online gambling" the Commission is considering the merits of introducing standards for gambling equipment. Certification of online gambling equipment including gambling software is commonly required by Member States' competent authorities in connection with an application for a gambling licence. A comparable level of security of online gambling in the EU is also aimed at a reduction of unnecessary administrative burdens relating to the different national certification procedures. To this end, the Commission will work with Member States through the group of experts on gambling services and with industry stakeholders including accreditation and standardisation organisations so as to benefit from shared knowledge and experience.
3.4.Climate change and Resource Efficient Europe
3.4.1.Fluorinated greenhouse gases
The new Regulation on fluorinated greenhouse gases (No 517/2014) introduces far-reaching policy changes to reduce the use of fluorinated gases in equipment such as air conditioning, refrigeration, foams, fire protection and aerosols. Hence the Commission foresees the following actions:
mapping existing standards and their relevance for the equipment types affected by the new fluorinated gas Regulation;
making recommendations on a review, update and possible harmonisation of these standards based on technological progress to enable the safe use of climate-friendly alternatives and removing unnecessary barriers to their uptake;
launching a review process in areas where this is deemed necessary.
The strategy on Green Infrastructure identifies standards as possibly contributing to 'growing the market' for Green Infrastructure solutions. The Commission will assess how technical standards, particularly in relation to physical building blocks and procedures, could increase the deployment of Green Infrastructure. Input from stakeholders and Member States, and through a study contract, the final results of which are expected in 2015, should help in considering the need for a mandate on further harmonising or developing Green Infrastructure-related standards.
The implementation of the action referred to in point 2.5.5 of the Commission’s 2014 annual work programme is still to be considered as part of this UWP.
3.4.4.Sustainable use of phosphorus
Following up to the commitment made in the Roadmap to a resource-efficient Europe, the Commission published in 2013 a Consultative Communication on the sustainable use of phosphorus. The follow up activities and policy actions to the consultation may lead to possible standardisation activities.
4.International Dimension of European Standardisation
The overall objective is to strengthen the global reach and the competitiveness of European industry by reducing technical barriers to trade. The use of common or technically aligned standards supports the exchange of goods and services by increasing interoperability at global level. Better harmonisation of environmental impact measurement standards allow for a more level playing field for industry. The objective will be pursued by:
Aiming for the widest possible coherence between international and European standards (primacy of international standardisation with a strong European lead in many sectors).
Promoting the technical alignment with (or the adoption of) international or European standards outside Europe whenever possible, in order to reduce technical barriers to trade.
Capitalising on international cooperation in research and innovation to foster the international alignment of technical specifications and requirements.
Raising awareness and promoting the advantages of European standardisation as a coherent regional system embedded in and fully supporting international standardisation and multilateral regulations. In particular, transferring know-how and experience of the well-functioning European model of voluntary standards supporting regulations and public policies, conformity assessment and market surveillance activities.
Contributing to the bilateral regulatory/policy dialogues between the EU and third countries, as well as to the relevant chapters of free trade agreements negotiations. The current priorities, in order of relevance, focus on the US (direct involvement on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership negotiations), China (EU-China 2020 Strategic Agenda for Cooperation, regulatory and industrial policy dialogue, innovation cooperation dialogue), Russia – in close co-operation with the European External Action Service– supporting the modernisation partnership, India, and Japan. Dialogues with Latin America, especially Brazil, Korea, and ASEAN will also be monitored.
Extending the single market in particular through the process of the enlargement of the European Union, the European Neighbourhood policy, and the negotiation of Agreements on Conformity Assessment and Acceptance of industrial products with third countries adopting European product safety legislation supported by European standards.
Strategic actions in priority countries consisting of:
European standardisation experts seconded to India and China (renewal of project) ensuring a local presence of European standardisation and a flow of information on access to these key markets; Brazil has been identified as a new candidate, with possible extension to the Mercosur region;
Web-based standardisation information platforms, with China, where the emphasis is on maintaining the project and extending its coverage beyond the current sectors, and perhaps in the future with the US, mapping the respective standardisation landscapes including market access aspects directly related to standardisation;
Supporting the strengthening of African capacities in the area of standards, in accordance with the Joint Africa-EU Strategy and its Roadmap 2014-17, notably through a technical and policy dialogue with relevant African standardisation and regional organisations (for example the recently established African Union PAQI, Pan-African Quality infrastructure).
5.Specific strategic actions
5.1.Financial support to European stakeholder organisations
The Commission will organise during the third trimester of 2014 calls for proposals in relation to European representation of SMEs, consumers and environmental and social stakeholder organisations in standardisation work. While this will facilitate SME participation by providing financing, the Commission will also continue to support specific projects facilitating SME access and participation in standardisation.
5.2.Intellectual property rights (IPR) in standards
The Commission will continue its actions towards the ESOs in order to clarify the rules on the use of intellectual property rights (IPR) in standards. It is expected that the ESOs will develop a platform allowing and facilitating the use of patents and new technologies in the development of standards.
5.3.Multi-stakeholder platform for ICT standardisation
The Commission will continue its work on ICT standardisation via the multi-stakeholder platform which is one of the innovations of the 2011 standardisation package. The permanent dialogue between public authorities, stakeholders and standards development organisations, including global fora and consortia, has proven, in the short time since it was set-up to be able to respond to the fast nature of developments in this field. A rolling plan for ICT standardisation has been developed in collaboration with the multi-stakeholder platform to set out in detail the regulatory context and the corresponding supporting standardisation activities.
The development and implementation of research and innovation agendas including through standardisation is essential in addressing competitiveness. Horizon 2020 will give strong support to the market uptake of innovation, in particular to supporting standardisation through research and putting science into standards. Standardisation activities are an essential channel for the market adoption of research results and for the diffusion of innovations.
5.5.Mandated work programmes under old mandates
Since the late 1980s the Commission has issued a number of standardisation requests asking the ESOs to develop European standards or to perform other standardisation related activities. Some of those mandates are for non-recurring actions (like studies) while some mandates relate to the development of European standards and also to maintain those standards by revising them regularly.
Considering that the legal format of a mandate has varied during the years and the fact that according to Article 10 of Regulation (EU) No 1025/2012 mandates are now Implementing Acts, it is very important to have a common understanding on: (i) which old mandates are still valid to establish new European standards in support of Union legislation and policies, and (ii) which mandates should be regarded as completed or expired. The Commission will clarify the situation together with the ESOs in order to have a common basis for all mandated standardisation and, in particular, to ensure that principles on developing harmonised standards are equally implemented by the ESOs.