Notification procedure concerning product regulations

Notification procedure of the EU

Under the EU law, Member States must provide the Commission and other Member States with advance notification of new national draft legislation concerning products and information society services that contain technical regulations. 

After they have received the notification, the Commission and other Member States have an opportunity to issue comments on the contents of the draft.

The purpose of the information exchange procedure is to ensure the openness of national statute drafting and prevent the creation of barriers to free movement of goods and services.

The notification must be submitted to the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment (maaraykset.tekniset@tem.fi), which will submit it to the Commission. After the Commission has received the notification it will introduce a three-month period during which the statute or regulation may not be put into effect.

The notification procedure concerning technical regulations is based on the Directive (EU) 2015/1535 of the European Parliament and of the Council laying down a procedure for the provision of information in the field of technical regulations and of rules on Information Society services (formerly (98/34/EC).

Notification procedure of the WTO

Under the information exchange system of the World Trade Organization (WTO), each member country must notify the WTO of all its draft technical regulations that may impact world trade.

The regulation may only be put into effect after a waiting period of 60 days so that other member countries can submit comments on the draft. The comments submitted by the other member countries should be taken into account in the drafting of the regulation. As regards the EU Member States, the response to a comment is issued in the name of the EU. The Finnish response is formulated jointly by the responsible authorities, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (SPS matters) and the Commission.

The purpose of the notification procedure is to ensure that the WTO member countries do not create unnecessary barriers to international trade.

The notification to the WTO should be submitted together with the notification to the European Union. 

Monitoring draft regulations proposed by other countries

Monitoring the notifications submitted by other EU countries and WTO member countries is important so that any harmful impacts of the draft regulations on the Finnish industries can be determined at an early stage. By monitoring the notifications, companies can also prepare for changes in their export markets. 

You can search for notifications submitted by other EU Member States under this link.

You can search for notifications made under the Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT Agreement) of the WTO under this link.

You can search for draft regulations covered by the Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (SPS Agreement) from a database maintained by the WTO under this  link.

By joining the Commission’s mailing list and selecting the subjects that interest you most you will receive other notifications of the EU relevant to the Member States or draft regulations that are in accordance with the WTO agreements on technical barriers to trade . By joining the mailing list, you will receive an automatic e-mail notification when a new draft regulation has arrived in the selected category.

Notification procedure concerning services

The notification obligation laid down in the Services Directive (2006/123/EC) applies to national provisions concerning a service activity or official regulations that are not based on the EU legislation. The purpose of the information exchange procedure is to ensure the openness of the national statute drafting process and ensure the free movement of services in the single market.

The notification obligation is based on Articles 15 and 39 of the Services Directive.

The notification obligation in Article 15 is applied to service licensing systems laying down the following licence requirements referred to in Article 15(2):

  • quantitative or territorial restrictions, in particular in the form of limits fixed according to population or of a minimum geographical distance between providers;
  • an obligation on a provider to take a specific legal form;
  • requirements which relate to the shareholding of a company;
  • requirements, other than those concerning matters covered by Directive 2005/36/EC (Professional Qualification Directive) or provided for in other Community instruments, which reserve access to the service activity in question to particular providers by virtue of the specific nature of the activity;
  • a ban on having more than one establishment in the territory of the same Member State;
  • requirements fixing a minimum number of employees;
  • fixed minimum and/or maximum tariffs with which the provider must comply;
  • an obligation on the provider to supply other specific services jointly with his/her service.

Under Article 39(5), a Member State must notify the Commission and other Member States of the requirements applying to service providers, changes to them and grounds for them that in the view of the Member State in question should, without exceptions, also apply to the provision of services from other Member States on a temporary or occasional basis. 

Under Article 16 of the Directive, these requirements must be justified for reasons of public policy, public security, public health or the protection of the environment and the envisaged measures must be proportional to the attainment of the objective.

The notification must be submitted to the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment (sisamarkkinat@tem.fi), which will submit it to the Commission.

Further information

akseli.koskela(at)tem.fi