This article was published in February 2017
Key Points:
  • All CE rules will continue to apply until we have actually left the Single Market
  • UK influence on the rules is already greatly diminished
  • CE marking is integral to the Single Market so we will need to apply the rules if we want to continue to trade with the EU, even if UK decides to repeal some of them for internal trade
  • Essential requirements are heavily integrated into our occupational health and safety regime
  • Environmental requirements are the ones most likely to be axed

It's now many months since the UK Government invoked Article 50 and it's still anybody's guess what the UK's relationship with the single market will look like after Brexit. 

It's going to be several years before we see any significant changes to the UK legislation implementing the CE Mark directives. Even then, the directives based are single market measures which are exactly those that the exit campaigners wish to preserve.

By voting for exit, the UK has now forfeited a substantial proportion of its influence over how those measures will be developed in the future, but the legislation will remain in place in Europe. UK companies will have to abide by it if they wish to continue to sell into the single market.

As things stand at present, the exit will have no effect on the UK’s participation in the European standards bodies, CEN and CENELEC. The current presumption whereby British Standards are withdrawn in favour of Harmonised European standards has never been mentioned in the debate about Brexit and it seems likely that it will remain for the foreseeable future. Since the majority of the detailed design measures for CE marked products come from standards, there will be little practical change so far as equipment designers are concerned.

In the long term, clearly there will be some divergence between UK and EU requirements for product safety. Conformance Ltd will continue to work hard to identify what’s actually required in the EU market and inform all our customers, both in the UK and elsewhere, what they need to do to legally sell their products. We are confident that our pragmatic approach based on a sound technical understanding of the requirements and a unique strategic understanding of the CE marking process will continue to ensure that our customers' needs are met.

Find out what will happen if there's no Brexit deal:


Brexit FAQ:

Further advice

For further information and advise please contact us at Conformance and we will be pleased to help.

Upcoming Training Courses

The Pressure Equipment Directive

Wednesday 24th February 2021 - Online

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Thursday 25th February 2021 - Online

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