No doubt, a good standard can ease consumers' life and enhance European competitiveness and technological leadership in global markets.
Standards are shaped by consensus among enterprises, public authorities, consumers, and trade unions, through a consultation process organised by independent, recognised standardisation bodies at national, European and international level. A harmonised standard is elaborated on the basis of a request from the European Commission to a recognised European Standards Organisation to develop a European standard that provides solutions for compliance with a legal provision. Such a request provides guidelines which standards must respect to meet the essential requirements or other provisions of harmonisation legislation.
Compliance with harmonised standards provides a presumption of conformity with the corresponding requirements of harmonisation legislation. Manufacturers, other economic operators or conformity assessment bodies can use harmonised standards to demonstrate that products, services or processes comply with relevant EU legislation.
To create the capacity to confer this presumption of conformity, the references of harmonised standards must be published in the Official Journal of the European Union.