The European Commission recently adopted a communication to the European Parliament and Council reporting on the implementation of the General Product Safety Directive (GPSD) from 2004 to 2008.
The communication concludes that the GPSD has been a powerful tool for ensuring a high level of consumer protection, helping to track down and eliminate a large number of unsafe products from the European market. It also finds that the rapid alert system for non-food consumer products (RAPEX) complements existing regulatory frameworks applying to key consumer products, including toys, and suggests that the increases in RAPEX notifications are a clear indication that market surveillance under the GPSD has been successful.
Recommendations for improvements in the future include clarification of the mandatory nature of the requirement for the product or its packaging to identify the producer, ensuring manufacturers or importers of unsafe products can be traced. The report also points to the need to avoid inconsistencies in transposition of the Directive between the member states.