CE marking represents the trade passport to Europe and it applies to a wide range of products that are regulated by European health, safety, and environmental protection legislation. It is a mandatory certification which ensures that the product meets all the standards and directives set out by European Union law. Manufacturers mark their product, so that if given permission, they can sell their product in the European market (European Economic Area). CE stands for Conformité Européenne, which is French for European Conformity. It is a declaration that the product has met the standards and has also passed the conformity assessment. This mark only indicates that the product fulfills all the legal requirements for safety, and does not certify quality.

Why is CE Marking Required?

The marking was introduced to set a standard of safety regarding the designs of certain products. It was also aimed at bringing all the respective national regulations for consumer and industrial products on one level, so that a common market can be set up for all European member states. It also provides a set standard, which is used as a uniform yardstick to check similar products, manufactured by different companies.

CE was introduced when a single market for fifteen European member countries was created in the year 1992. This was done with the objective of getting rid of the barriers, that hinder trade and commerce between European countries. Till that time, there were a number of measures enacted by the European Parliament, which were introduced with the intention to make the concept of a single market practicable. The new directives stated controls on product designing and relevant documentation in minute details.

How do I Get a Product CE Marked?

To get a product CE marked, it has to be shown that the necessary requirements related to any relevant directive have been met and fulfilled. The requirements are divided in two sections, one is 'Protection Requirement' and other is 'Administrative Requirement'. The latter deals with the way the products are to be marked, which implies that the manufacturer has to obtain a 'Declaration of Conformity'. The former deals with the design of a particular product, which can be verified by checking it against the standards.

One should also know about the CE marking directives when trying to get the product marked. These are directives which are printed and promulgated by the European Commission. They specify the protection requirements regarding design safety and the administrative essentials for products that are to be manufactured or imported into the European Union.

There are quite a few directives, covering a large range of products, but they all fundamentally consist of two distinct sets of requirements. The directives, however, do not mention anything regarding how the specified requirements are to be achieved. It is for the individual to decide how he wants to achieve the objectives.

There are approximately thirty directives, that are to be considered, when trying to get the product CE marked. It helps the consumers get the right kind of products, since it signifies that the product being bought is safe; thus promoting public safety. It increases the credibility of the product and also the level of customer service. It is a legal requirement that includes most of the products that are manufactured and sold.