Policies & Issues

Electromagnetic Compatibility Directive (EMCD)


What is it?

Most electric devices and installations generate, propagate and receive electromagnetic energy in a non-intentional manner. The Electro-magnetic Compatibility Directive (EMCD) aims to ensure that equipment, devices or systems will not interfere with or prevent each other's correct operation through spurious emission and absorption of electro-magnetic interferences. The issue of minimising the exposure of consumers and workers from any adverse effects of such electro-magnetic fields to their health is a different issue (see EMF).


Why is it important?

All electrical products placed on the EU internal market should apply the same EMC requirements, in order to ensure that they can operate without problems wherever they are used across the EU territory. Undisturbed usage of electric devices and installations for all customers is ensured by compliance with the EU Directive 2004/108/EC (previously 89/336/EEC).

Manufacturers may apply voluntary harmonised standards published in the Official Journal of the EU in order to get a presumption of conformity to the Directive and be able to affix, as a result, the CE marking on the product or its packaging.

From 20 April 2016 a new Electro-Magnetic Compatibility Directive will be applicable, (2014/30/EU). This Directive has exactly the same scope and essential requirements as the previous version 2004/108/EC.  However, economic operators would have to comply with some further formal requirements, as the new Directive is aligned with the New Legislative Framework (NLF). For more details on the NLF, please visit the relevant section.


Our viewpoint

The 2004/108/EC Directive has been a great stepping-stone as it clarified the scope (improved definitions, more clearly defined exclusions), provided fixed installations with a more appropriate regulatory regime and simplified the conformity assessment procedures, by abolishing compulsory third-party intervention where harmonised standards have not been applied.

The Directive’s alignment with the New Legislative Framework (NLF) should bring further legal predictability: it requires economic operators to apply the same traceability and compliance information as for other applicable harmonisation legislation and authorities can more easily trace non-compliant products.


How we’ve been engaged

Orgalime actively contributed to the alignment of the EMC Directive with the New Legislative Framework (NLF) and its smooth implementation. We ensured that no changes occurred to the essential requirements and that no excessive administrative burden was added to manufacturers.

At this stage we are providing the expertise of our members to the Commission in order to draft the horizontal guidelines of Directives aligned with the New Legislative Framework (Blue Guide) and the EMC guide.

We also regularly provide technical expertise in discussions regarding the application of the EMC Directive through our participation in the relevant advisory committee of the Commission, which is comprised of national market surveillance authorities and stakeholders.


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