Looking at the future of the European Rapid Alert System for dangerous non-food products (RAPEX)

The new Head of Unit for Communication and Relations with Stakeholders within the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Justice and Consumers, Mrs Pinuccia Contino, addressed the European Regional meeting at the Global Forum to tell us more about the future updates of the European Rapid Alert System for dangerous non-food products (RAPEX).

RAPEX facilitates the rapid exchange of information between the national authorities of 31 countries, the European Commission and stakeholders on dangerous products found on the European market. If a manufacturer or distributor finds out that one of their products on sale is dangerous, they have to inform the competent national authority and start the recall procedure.

According to Mrs. Contino, one of the strengths of the system is to allow a swift exchange of information between authorities with the aim to remove unsafe products from the European market. In Europe, the General Product Safety Directive imposes that only safe products can be placed on the market and that businesses are obliged to report about dangerous products to the authorities and to take appropriate measures if needed. It is important to clarify that the Rapid Alert System covers consumer and professional products.
Mrs. Contino was particularly proud to announce precise that the EU Commission had signed agreements with Amazon and Alibaba on the removal of dangerous products from their online-platforms.

Concerning the future, we have learned that the European Commission’s communication strategy towards the external audience will see the introduction of immediate recall information on the web and an increased awareness of the system among consumers and stakeholders through engagement in social media.

To learn more about RAPEX, watch this video