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Diplomacy in Action

Framework for Promoting Transatlantic Economic Integration, Annex I: Fostering Cooperation and Reducing Regulatory Barriers, B. Sectoral--Import/Toy Safety Cooperation


Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs
January 22, 2010

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Points of Contact

European Commission:
Maija Laurila, Deputy Head of Unit, Product and Service Safety, DG SANCO
Email: maija.laurila@ec.europa.eu
Telephone: 032-2-296-7879
U.S. Government:
Rich O’Brien, Director, Office of International Programs, Consumer Product Safety Commission
Email: robrien@cpsc.gov
Telephone: (301) 504-7054
EU Delegation in Washington:
Agnieszka Jarmula
Email: Agnieszka.Jarmula@ec.europa.eu
Telephone: 202-862-9515
U.S. Mission to the EU:
Greg Garramone
Email: garramonegg@state.gov
Telephone: 02-508-6595




Reference

Requested by November, 2007 TEC.

Goal

To eliminate unnecessary regulatory divergences by fostering greater understanding of and convergence in our respective overall approaches to regulation of toys and children’s products.

Specific Objectives

1. Report on respective approaches to import safety regarding toys and children’s products.
2. Work jointly to promote effective and efficient regulation in third countries, particularly China.
3. Report on respective approaches to import safety in toys, electrical equipment for consumer use, and other non-food consumer products.
4. Conclude an agreement on the sharing of sensitive information between CPSC and DG SANCO.

Progress

The August 2008 Consumer Protection Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) significantly expanded CPSC authority and capacity for international cooperation.

The Acting Chairman of CPSC and the Director General of DG SANCO jointly visited China to discuss quality assurance for toys and electrical equipment in September 2008. This dialogue was continued in a trilateral meeting with the CPSC Chairman, SANCO Commissioner, and Chinese administrator in Brussels in November 2008. A trilateral meeting between the CPSC Acting Chairman, DG SANCO Commissioner, and the Chinese AQSIQ Minister followed in Brussels November, 2008.

CPSC, DG SANCO, and AQSIQ are currently planning for the next trilateral meeting in Shanghai and outreach initiative on product safety to Chinese manufacturers. This work will take place in October 2010.

It was reported in the November, 2007 TEC that CPSC and DG SANCO regulators are working on an agreement to share confidential product safety information so that unsafe products can be removed from consumer use and the marketplace on both sides of the Atlantic as quickly as possible; CPSC and DG SANCO are working to put such an agreement in place during 2010.

TEC recommended that the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), DG SANCO, and DG Enterprise establish a Toy Safety Working Group. This group meets quarterly via videoconference to discuss toy safety. Additionally, CPSC and DG SANCO meet monthly to discuss common issues and are currently discussing plans for the next U.S.-EU-China trilateral on product safety to be held in October 2010.

Next Steps

The CPSC/SANCO agreement on sensitive information sharing is expected to be concluded by the end of 2010.

Collaboration on product tracking labels and traceability is also being explored through the International Consumer Product Safety Caucus (ICPSC).



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