28th July 2023 |
The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment is seeking views from stakeholders and interested parties on a proposed EU Directive which aims to enhance sustainable consumption by amending Regulation (EU) 2017/2394 (cooperation between national authorities on enforcement of consumer protection laws), Directives (EU) 2019/771 (Sale of Goods) and (EU) 2020/1828 (Representative Actions).
The issue of premature disposal of repairable consumer goods exists across the EU and a wide range of consumer goods (for example, white goods, electronic goods, TVs).
The proposal aims to promote sustainable consumption through repair and reuse of goods within and beyond the legal guarantee of conformity. The proposal aims to make it easier and more cost-effective for consumers to repair as opposed to replace goods. It is expected that this will result in savings for consumers and support some of the objectives of the European Green Deal, such as reducing waste and carbon emissions. More demand should translate into a boost to the repair sector while incentivising producers and sellers to develop more sustainable business models. The draft Directive was published by the EU Commission on 22 March 2023.
The Commission has proposed a combination of six preferred policy options which will form the basis of the negotiation process:
- prioritising repair whenever it is cheaper than replacement within the legal guarantee framework.
- A national online platform, matchmaking consumers with repairers and promoting refurbished goods.
- an obligation on repairers to issue, upon request, a quote on price and conditions for repair in a standardised form.
- an obligation on producers of goods to which reparability requirements apply (under Union law) to repair outside the legal guarantee for a price.
- an obligation on producers to inform on their obligation to repair, where applicable.
- a voluntary EU easy repair standard.
The ‘right to repair' initiative complements two other proposals to achieve sustainable consumption throughout the entire lifecycle of a product, setting the framework for a ‘right to repair' across the EU. On the supply side, the proposal will work in tandem with the Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation proposal (ESPR), which promotes the reparability of products in the production phase and, on the demand side, with the proposal for a Directive on Empowering Consumers for the Green Transition (ECGT), which enables consumers to take informed purchasing decisions at the point of sale.
The draft Directive will undergo the normal legislative process through the European Institutions and the draft Directive, Annex and supplementary information can be found at Rules promoting the repair of goods (europa.eu).
A Response Template is attached which sets out the Articles and related Recitals in the proposal. Views are sought on any/all Article(s), with a particular request for views on the key elements of the proposal as outlined at points 1 to 6 above.
Views from interested parties on the draft Directive are requested no later than close of business on 8 September 2023.
Submissions should be marked 'EU directive on common rules promoting the repair of goods' and can either be emailed to email@example.com or sent in hard copy to the Competition and Consumer Policy Unit, Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, 1 Earlsfort Centre, Lower Hatch St, Dublin 2, D02 PW01.
Your attention is drawn to the fact that information provided to the department may be disclosed in response to a request under the Freedom of Information Act 2014. Therefore, should you consider that any information you provide is commercially sensitive, please identify same, and specify the reason for its sensitivity. The department will consult with you regarding information identified by you as sensitive before making a decision on any Freedom of Information request. Any personal information, which you volunteer to this department, will be treated with the highest standards of security and confidentiality, strictly in accordance with the Data Protection Acts 1988-2018.
The department may also decide to place any submissions received by it on the department’s website. A decision on any such placement may occur without prior consultation with respondents to this process. Thus, it is in the interests of respondents to highlight, in their submissions, any commercially sensitive or confidential information at the time of submission.
Further information may be obtained by contacting the Competition and Consumer Protection Unit of the department by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Competition and Consumer Policy, Consumer and Competition