The 2015/1535 notification procedure allows the European Commission and EU countries to examine technical regulations for products and information society services (online services including e-commerce) that other EU countries intend to introduce. It prevents the creation of new technical barriers to trade by ensuring the compatibility of national legislation with EU law and internal market principles. The procedure also helps prevent further legal action by the Commission.
How does the 2015/1535 procedure work?
According to Directive (EU) 2015/1535, EU countries must inform the Commission of any draft technical regulation before its adoption. Starting from the date of notification, a three-month standstill period comes into place, during which the EU country must refrain from adopting the technical regulation in question. This procedure enables the Commission and other EU countries to examine the proposed text and respond.
The Commission and other EU countries may submit a detailed opinion or comments to the draft if they deem that the notified text may create barriers to
- the free movement of goods
- the free provision of information society services
- EU secondary legislation
The submission of a detailed opinion prolongs the standstill period by another three months and the EU country that has notified the draft regulation must explain what it intends to do in response. The Commission can also block a draft for a period of 12 to 18 months if EU harmonisation work is planned or is already underway in the same field.
At the end of the 2015/1535 procedure, the EU country has to submit the final text of the regulation to the Commission and other EU countries. This allows them to check whether their opinions were taken into account.
The notified drafts and their translations in all EU languages are available in the Technical Regulations Information Systems database (TRIS).
The urgency procedure
The Directive (EU) 2015/1535 also provides for an urgency procedure allowing for the immediate adoption of a national draft in case of serious and unforeseeable circumstances. The Commission decides if the urgency procedure is justified as soon as possible. If accepted by the Commission, the three-month standstill period does not apply. The notified text can be adopted immediately.
The procedure was set up in 1983 through the Council Directive 83/189/EEC. This procedure has been codified by Directive 98/34/EC of 22 June 1998 and modified by Directive 98/48/EC of 20 July 1998, mainly to extend its application to Information Society services. Directive 98/34/EC has been repealed and replaced by Directive (EU) 2015/1535 of 9 September 2015.
The main actors are EU countries, the European Commission, EFTA countries, Turkey, and stakeholders including industry.