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Trilateral cooperation

EU, United States, China

Ensuring a high level of product safety is a matter of shared concern for the European Union, China and the United States. Combined efforts and intensified cooperation are in the mutual interest of our citizens and economies.

In response to the growing bilateral contacts between these three trading partners, we have engaged since the middle of 2008 in tri-lateral discussions to build up mutual trust and to develop a coordinated response to the challenges we face in addressing product safety concerns.

EU-US-China Initiative on Consumer Product Safety Compliance

A joint EU-US-China Initiative on Consumer Product Safety Compliance took place in the People's Republic of China, from 19-24 September 2008. Product safety is a focal area of concern for the three parties and, in the past years, all have made significant efforts. The parties have now added a tripartite initiative to the already existing and fruitful bilateral mechanisms.

The programme for the September tripartite initiative began with high-level talks on 19 September in Beijing. The European Commission was represented by Mr. Robert Madelin, Director-General for Health and Consumers, who together with members of his delegation, met with Mr. Wei Chuanzhong, Vice Minister of the Chinese Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ), and Mrs. Nancy Nord, Acting Chairman of the US Consumer Product Safety Commission. For more information about the results of these talks please see: Joint statement

The joint initiative continued with three one-day training seminars in Beijing, Guangzhou and Shanghai focusing respectively on textiles, toys and electrical appliances. The series of seminars brought together Chinese, EU and US regulators, businesses, standard-makers and test laboratories. The presentations clarified the European and US safety requirements for the selected consumer products with a view to greater understanding of product safety requirements and thereby ensuring safety throughout the entire supply chain. Talks also covered recent developments and best practices in market surveillance and consumer product safety compliance. For more information, please see: Consumer Product Safety – EU-US-China Cooperation (19 September 2008).

High-Level Regulatory EU-China-US Trilateral Meeting 2008

Following the successful “Joint U.S.-EU-China Initiative on Consumer Product Safety Compliance" held in China in September 2008, the product safety authorities of the European Union (European Commission, EC), the U.S. (Consumer Product Safety Commission, CPSC) and China (General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, AQSIQ) took an important further step in strengthening their trilateral cooperation in this area at a High-Level Regulatory EU-China-US Trilateral Meeting organised in Brussels on 17 November 2008.

Mrs. Kuneva, the European Commissioner responsible for Consumer Affairs, welcomed to Brussels U.S. CPSC Chairman Nord and AQSIQ Vice Minister Wei to discuss at the highest level key developments and further joint activities that could be undertaken to improve cooperation and the exchange of information relating to consumer product safety. This top-level tri-partite summit took place in a spirit of resolve, openness and mutual respect. For more information please see:

Joint Press Statement (17 November 2008)
Press Release: Consumers: European Commission hosts first high level EU-China-US product safety summit (17 November 2008)
MEMO: Consumer Product Safety – a Common Objective (17 November 2008)
MEMO: Questions and Answers: International Product Safety Week and international cooperation on product safety (17 November 2008)
Speech: Meglena Kuneva: "High level EU-China-US Trilateral Summit on Product Safety" (17 November 2008)

High-Level Regulatory EU-China-US Trilateral Meeting 2010

The second High-Level EU-China-US Trilateral Meeting took place on 26 October 2010 during the Consumer and Product Safety Day at the Shanghai World Expo. The Trilateral Summit on product safety brought Commissioner Dalli together with his product safety counterparts Mr. Zhi Shuping, Minister of China's General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine and Mrs. Inez Moore Tenenbaum, Chairman of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

This trilateral co-operation reflects the determination of all sides to keep product safety at the top of the international political agenda, recognising that open markets can only be built on strong and secure management of global product supply chains. The trilateral priority areas for action agreed are set out in the joint press statement (see below), including on product traceability, convergence of safety requirements, advice to manufacturers and joint enforcement actions.

Joint press statement (26 October 2010)
Press release: EU-China-US co-operation on consumer issues in the spotlight at World Expo Shanghai and EU-China-US product safety summit
MEMO: Questions and Answers: International cooperation on product safety

Trilateral EU-China-US Consumer Product Safety Summit 2012 New

The third Trilateral EU-China-US Consumer Product Safety Summit took place on 28-29 June in the United States with the participation of the European Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy, John Dalli, Mr Sun Dawei,Vice Minister of AQSIQ and Ms Inez M. Tenenbaum, Chairman of the CPSC.

The main topic of the summit was: "Product safety surveillance from factory to front door: a cooperative effort".
The priorities addressed in the trilateral outlines how the co-operation will further enhance regulatory cooperation and promote cooperation on "seamless surveillance".

The joint statement also highlights some specific actions which will help implement the trilateral cooperation, including on product traceability, better information exchange between regulators and to continue disseminating product safety information to industry stakeholders.

Joint Press Statement: http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/health_consumer/docs/trilateral_product_safety_en.pdf

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