APPLiA speaks about the EU Single Market

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APPLiA members BSH, De’ Longhi, Electrolux, Miele, Samsung and Whirpool with Tefal-OBH Nordica and APPLiA Sweden jointly contributed to a debate piece released by Swedish industry newspaper SvD on the implications of national initiatives on the functioning of the EU Single Market. “It is urgent – they explained – to turn the world into a sustainable one, but national politicians must act at the European level if we are to achieve the desired effect – state debaters from the white goods sector. The EU’s internal market and our common acquisition have made the European Union the world leader in sustainable products. This strength is crucial for the transition to a more sustainable production and consumption of appliances which leads to a more sustainable world. In addition, most appliances and household appliances sold in the EU are manufactured within the European Union in modern and energy-efficient factories, which minimizes environmental impact from production. But individual countries’ proposals for stricter legislation, in the spirit of sustainability, may create problems for the internal market to function in the future. The proposals certainly have good intentions and our industry welcomes stricter legislation and higher demands on sustainability throughout the production chain, but the proposals risk creating a patchwork of individual regulations for products in different countries, which in turn affects the environment. Some examples: the white goods industry wants to actively contribute to increased sustainability in all of these areas. To be able to do so in an efficient and cost-effective manner with the greatest possible benefit for the environment, it must be done with the help of common rules at EU level. Even seemingly small measures, such as country-specific product labels, leads to complexity and additional costs in development, manufacturing and distribution. It is urgent to turn an entire world into a sustainable one, but national politicians must act at European level if we are to achieve the desired effect throughout the product chain. Otherwise, product development, which is crucial to develop sustainable future solutions, manufacturing processes and distribution, suffers at the expense of the environment. Thanks to the internal market, goods, services, people and capital can move across borders between the 27 EU Member States. The free movement of goods has meant that companies have a significantly larger market for their products. The result is that products can be developed and manufactured in larger quantities than before. The result has been more energy-efficient products, higher quality, and better performance at a lower price. Our industry is a clear example of this. We have common EU rules for energy efficiency, energy labelling, recycling, chemical content and product safety, to name a few. This means that manufacturers have continuously invested to reduce energy and water consumption and distributed the costs of these developments on more products. One of the Union’s greatest successes is the internal market. Now more than ever it needs to be safeguarded for the transition to go quickly and apply to all Member States and their businesses. Now more than ever it seems however, to be exposed to pressures that lead to the opposite”. (Source: Svenska Dagbladet SvD)