The positive effects of standardisation are well known and recognised. However to ensure that Europe’s standardisation system can meet today’s challenges, the Commission proposed a reform package in 2011 including a new Regulation on European standardisation which took effect from 1 January 2013. This reform aimed at increasing the system’s inclusiveness, speed, responsiveness, transparency, flexibility and scope.
One innovation of the reform is the obligation for the Commission to adopt an annual Union work programme for European standardisation, which identifies strategic priorities for European standardisation on the basis of the policy objectives set by the Commission in its planning. This Communication, which is adopted for the second year running, identifies those priority domains where the Commission has intentions to use European standardisation as a policy tool in support of the Union's new or existing legislation and policies in the course of 2015. The intentions may lead in the future to formal standardisation requests (mandates) to the European standardisation organisations (ESOs) – CEN, CENELEC and ETSI, however leaving room also for standardisation related preliminary or ancillary actions invited or initiated by the Commission without mandates.