About the Programme

The Consumer Programme 2014-2020 is a funding programme of the European Commission created to support growth and competitiveness within the Union.

The general objective of the programme is to ensure a high level of consumer protection through the empowerment of European consumers. Consumers are placed at the heart of the internal market, in the frame of the EU strategy for a smart, sustainable and inclusive growth.

More specifically, the regulation on the current programme sets four principal objectives:

I. Safety: to consolidate and enhance product safety
Through effective market surveillance throughout the Union.
This objective will be measured in particular through the activity and effectiveness of the EU rapid alert system for dangerous consumer products (RAPEX).
II. Consumer information and education and support to consumer organisations
To improve consumers’ education, information and awareness of their rights, to develop the evidence base for consumer policy and to provide support to consumer organisations, including taking into account the specific needs of vulnerable consumers.
III. Rights and redress: to develop and reinforce consumer rights
In particular through smart regulatory action and improving access to simple, efficient, expedient and low-cost redress including alternative dispute resolution.
This objective will be measured in particular through the recourse to alternative dispute resolution to solve cross- border disputes and through the activity of a Union-wide online dispute resolution system, and by the percentage of consumers taking action in response to a problem encountered.
IV. Enforcement: to support enforcement of consumer rights
By strengthening cooperation between national enforcement bodies and by supporting consumers with advice.
This objective will be measured in particular through the level of information flow and the effectiveness of the cooperation within the Consumer Protection Cooperation Network, the activity of the European Consumer Centres and how well known they are to consumers.
High-quality consumer information and participation is a cross-sectoral priority and, therefore, shall be expressly provided for, whenever possible, in all sectoral objectives and actions financed under the Programme.

The Programme and Chafea

Chafea is the Executive Agency of the European Commission entrusted with the management of the Consumer Programme. The topics and actions to be implemented are decided by the Directorate General for Justice and Consumers and are laid down in the Annual work programme adopted by the Commission.

In order to execute the programme in accordance with the objectives of the EU consumer policy, Chafea allocates funding through a variety of funding opportunities.