As the Brexit transition period comes to an end, leading compliance authority Bureau Veritas is encouraging manufacturers to get ready to make the switch from CE marking to UKCA in order to continue to sell products in the British market.
It comes as the UK Government has confirmed that UKCA marking will come into force from the 1 January 2021, which marks the start of a year-long ‘standstill period’ in the crossover from CE to UKCA conformity.
From January 2021, UK-based EU Notified Bodies including Bureau Veritas will switch to UK Approved Bodies and therefore offering the new UKCA mark. Products which have already been assessed and marked to CE standards will continue to be recognised in the UK until the end of 2021, providing the UK and EU regulations remain aligned.
With this in mind, Bureau Veritas, an approved body for both CE marking and the new UKCA marking, is urging businesses to act sooner rather than later to avoid delays in products coming to market.
Switching to an alternate CE marking provider outside of the UK could delay the inevitable transition to UKCA, which becomes mandatory at the end of the standstill period on 31 December 2021. However, as Bureau Veritas advises, the CE mark will still be required for sale of goods in any of the remaining 27 EU member states.
For products which require third-party assessment on or after 1 January 2021, manufacturers have the option to use a non-UK-based EU-27 Notified Body (that is an EU notified body from an EU-27 member state), to CE mark their products, which will still be acceptable for products destined for the UK market until 31st December 2021.
Christopher Hetherington, PED technical manager at Bureau Veritas, said: “With the standstill period beginning in January 2021, there will be UK-approved bodies ready to assess product conformity to UK designated standards. We urge British manufacturers to avoid delay tactics and be proactive in switching over to the new UK certification scheme without delay.”
“Remember, only UK Approved Bodies for UKCA can support you with your future Great Britain market access requirements. You only have a 12-month standstill period window to get the conformity you need and putting off the inevitable will result in costly time-to-market delays when the standstill period comes to an end.”
“Offering a broad portfolio of national accreditations, Bureau Veritas UK can support with both UKCA marking for placement of products on the Great British market and CE marking for products destined for EU member state markets.”