The most effective way to avoid unsafe products to be placed on the EU market is to carry out adequate checks before those products are released for free circulation in the European Union.
This requires the involvement of customs, which is the only service with a complete overview over trade flows across the EU external border and can be achieved through systematic cooperation between Market Surveillance Authorities (MSAs) and customs.
Guidelines for import controls in the area of product safety and compliance have been developed and are available for the Member States since 2011.
Product safety and conformity requirements in the EU are covered by a Directive on general product safety and a number of other laws for specific products.
Regulation 765/2008 EC setting out the requirements for accreditation and market surveillance relating to the marketing of products, provides among other things, the framework for product safety related border controls.