What are the duties of manufacturers, importers and distributors of radio equipment?
Manufacturers must ensure the conformity of the radio equipment and check that the equipment is accompanied by appropriate documents, information and markings. Importers and distributors are responsible for verifying that manufacturers fulfil their duties.
Before you start selling radio equipment, check that:
- the equipment and packaging bear the CE marking
- the equipment comes with an EU declaration of conformity (DoC) drawn up by the manufacturer
- the manual is in Finnish and Swedish
- the equipment comes with the importer’s contact information.
Conformity of radio equipment
Compliant radio equipment meets the requirements laid down in the Radio Equipment Directive 2014/53/EU (External link) and can move freely throughout the EU. Only compliant radio equipment may be sold in the EU.
The conformity of radio equipment is indicated by:
- CE marking
CE marking is the manufacturer's declaration that the equipment meets the essential requirements of the Radio Equipment Directive. CE marking must be affixed on the equipment and packaging. Manufacturers are responsible for affixing the CE marking. Authorities or other official bodies do not award CE markings.
- EU declaration of conformity (DoC) by the manufacturer
The EU DoC is a document drafted by the manufacturer stating the conformity of the equipment, in other words, that the equipment meets the requirements of the Radio Equipment Directive. The equipment must be accompanied by either the full text or a simplified version of the EU DoC.
The EU DoC is specified in Annex VI and the simplified EU DoC in Annex VII to the Radio Equipment Directive.
Additional requirements for radio equipment
The Radio Equipment Directive (RED) allows the European Commission to set additional requirements for radio equipment.
Information security, Article 3(3)(d), (e) and (f) of the RED
The European Commission has adopted a new Regulation (External link) concerning Article 3, points (d), (e) and (f) of the RED. The Regulation contains information security requirements for certain radio equipment covered by the RED, including internet-connected equipment, toys, equipment for childcare and wearable equipment. The new requirements protect networks, improve the protection of consumers’ privacy and reduce the risk of monetary fraud committed using internet-connected equipment. The Regulation provides for a transition period for equipment manufacturers. Equipment placed on the EU market must comply with the new requirements starting from 1 August 2024.
Supporting access to emergency services, Article 3(3)(g) of the RED
The Commission has earlier adopted a Regulation (External link) concerning Article 3(3)(g) of the RED. The objective of the Regulation is to improve the positioning of emergency callers when calls are made with smartphones. Smartphones must be able to receive and process Wi-Fi data and data from Global Navigation Satellite Systems. They must be compatible at least with the European Galileo system. The Regulation provided for a transition period for equipment manufacturers. The requirements apply to smartphones placed on the EU market as from 17 March 2022.
New EU Regulation on market surveillance and compliance of products
The new Regulation (EU) (External link)on market surveillance and compliance of products enters into force on 16 July 2021. The Market Surveillance Regulation is also applied to radio equipment. The objectives of the Regulation include reducing the number of non-compliant products and improving the functioning of the internal market.
According to Article 4 of the Regulation, products may be placed on the EU market only if there is an economic operator established in the EU who is responsible for certain tasks with respect to the compliance of the product. This economic operator can be a manufacturer, an importer, an authorised representative or a . The European Commission has published guidelines (External link)on the application of the Regulation.
Please note that the table “Obligations of manufacturers, importers and distributors” has not yet been updated to include the obligations imposed on different economic operators based on the Market Surveillance Regulation.