Radio and Telecommunications Terminal Equipment (R&TTE)
What is it?
The Radio and Telecommunications Terminal Directive (R&TTED, 1999/5/EC) sets harmonised rules for marketing products using the radio frequency spectrum and for equipment attached to public telecommunications networks. The size and purpose of these products vary from mobile telephones to industrial installations.
Because of the fast developments in product communication, rules on radio equipment apply to an increasing number of products used in a growing number of public and private applications. Therefore, the R&TTED 1999/5/EC was revised in 2014. It will be replaced by the Radio Equipment Directive (RED, 2014/53/EU) in 2016.
The Radio Equipment Directive applies to electrical and electronic products, which intentionally emit or receive radio waves for communication or determination purposes. It aims at ensuring that radio equipment in the EU effectively uses and supports the efficient use of radio spectrum while avoiding harmful radio interference with other products and installations (N.B.: emission limitation and immunity against electromagnetic interferences are regulated under the EMC Directive).
Manufacturers will have to comply with the Directive from 2017 onwards.
Why is it important?
The efficient use of the radio spectrum is a key factor in the deployment of wireless communications.
The harmonised rules on radio equipment and their implementation do not only protect the public interest for reliable radio communication; they are also playing an important role in supporting the competitiveness of radio equipment manufacturers, as they allow the uptake and deployment of new technologies.
Finally, it is important to guarantee a free circulation of radio equipment in the internal market, so that innovative solutions supported by European harmonised standards can be used without technical or regulatory barriers in all member states.
The legislation on radio equipment is important for a growing number of electrical and electronic products.
Orgalime considers that Directive 2014/53/EU is a well-balanced Directive with proportionate essential requirements. Furthermore, it has achieved a clear alignment with the New Legislative Framework. However, Orgalime is concerned about the Commission’s possibility to establish registration procedures for categories of radio equipment that member states authorities would assess as showing a high level of non-compliance. Registration is a very burdensome and costly requirement for legitimate manufacturers which will not prevent unfair competitors placing products on the market as they will not register.
How we’ve been engaged
Orgalime provided expert input during the legislative process for the adoption of the Radio Equipment Directive. Thanks to our advocacy:
- The definition of radio equipment is not excessively extended to new product categories
- The possibility to establish registration procedures will only be considered after the Directive is implemented and only for certain product categories where high levels of non-compliance have been detected by market surveillance authorities.
- The obligation to have a common charger was limited to particular categories or classes of radio equipment. It will only be implemented after an impact assessment.
- Manufacturers will have 3 years to comply with the Directive from its publication in the Official Journal of the EU in 2014.
At this stage we are providing the expertise of our members to the Commission in drafting the horizontal guidelines of Directives aligned with the New Legislative Framework (Blue Guide) and the specific guide to the Radio Equipment Directive.
We also regularly provide technical expertise in discussions regarding the application of the Radio Equipment Directive through our participation in the relevant advisory committee of the Commission, which is comprised by national market surveillance authorities and stakeholders.