European standardisation

Regulation (EU) No 1025/2012 on European standardisation

It aims to modernise and improve standardisation, which plays a leading role in the EU’s Single Market by outlining how:
the EU standards-setting process operates; and
the various organisations involved in this process (both at EU and national level) work together.
It seeks to simplify and adapt the legislative framework to reflect the latest developments and future challenges.
Standards support market competition, reduce costs, improve safety, and enhance competition, protecting health, safety, security, and the environment.

Key Points

The regulation introduces rules governing:

cooperation between standardisation organisations, national standardisation bodies, EU countries and the European Commission;
establishing market-driven European standards for products and services in line with EU legislation and policies;
how information and communication technology technical specifications can support this process;
financing standardisation activities, normally in the form of grants or calls for proposals in line with EU legislation and policies;
stakeholder participation.

The regulation covers standards for services as well as for products, and environmental and public health protection must also be included among the required characteristics of a product or service.

Broad participation in the standards setting process

European standardisation organisations must facilitate the effective participation of all relevant stakeholders, including small- and medium-sized enterprises, consumer organisations and environmental and social stakeholders in their standardisation work.

National standardisation bodies must facilitate the access of SMEs to the standards and their development processes, sharing best practices to improve participation.

EU countries will, where appropriate, encourage participation of public authorities, including market surveillance authorities, in national standardisation activities to develop or revise standards.

Standardisation requests to European standardisation organisations

The Commission may request one or several European standardisation organisations to draft a European standard, which must be market-driven, and take into account the public interest as well as EU policy objectives. The Commission determines the requirements and deadlines to be met. EU countries will communicate to the Commission all requests made to standards institutions to draw up technical specifications or a specific product standard so that a draft technical regulations can be drawn up.

Recognition and use of technical specifications

Public authorities should use the full range of relevant technical specifications when procuring hardware, software and information technology services. The technical specifications have market acceptance and do not hamper interoperability with existing EU or international standards.

Annual work programme, and objections to harmonised standards

The annual work programme sets out strategic priorities taking into account EU long-term growth strategies.The Commission will set up a notification system for all stakeholders to ensure proper consultation and market relevance before adopting the annual work programme or standardisation requests, or making decisions on any objections to harmonised standards brought by EU countries or the European Parliament.


The European standardisation organisations will send an annual report on the implementation of this regulation to the Commission.

Amendments since publication

The regulation has been amended since it was issued to explicitly cover the following specific standards:

pyrotechnic articles;
recreational craft and personal watercraft;
explosives for civil uses;
simple pressure vessels;
non-automatic weighing instruments;
measuring instruments;
lifts and safety components for lifts;
equipment used in potentially explosive atmospheres; and
pressure equipment.

Application & Background

It has applied since 1 January 2013.

See also:

Standardisation policy (European Commission)

Independent review of the European standardisation system (European Commission).


Regulation (EU) No 1025/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2012 on European standardisation, amending Council Directives 89/686/EEC and 93/15/EEC and Directives 94/9/EC, 94/25/EC, 95/16/EC, 97/23/EC, 98/34/EC, 2004/22/EC, 2007/23/EC, 2009/23/EC and 2009/105/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council and repealing Council Decision 87/95/EEC and Decision No 1673/2006/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L 316, 14.11.2012, pp. 12-33).

Successive amendments to Regulation (EU) No 1025/2012 have been incorporated into the original text. This consolidated version is of documentary value only.


Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council and the Economic and Social Committee — A strategic vision for European standards: Moving forward to enhance and accelerate the sustainable growth of the European economy by 2020 (COM(2011) 311 final, 1.6.2011)


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