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Mutual recognition of goods

According to the principle of mutual recognition, Member States of the European Union may not prohibit the sale in their territory of goods which are lawfully marketed in another Member State, even if those goods have been produced in accordance with different technical rules. However, Member States may restrict the placing on the market of goods which have been lawfully placed on the market in another Member State if such a restriction is justified on imperative grounds of public interest (e.g. public security, health protection, consumer protection or environmental protection).

The principle of mutual recognition is based on Articles 34-36 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), and is further stipulated by Regulation (EU) 2019/515 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 19 March 2019 on the mutual recognition of goods lawfully marketed in another Member State which entered into force on 19 April 2020, and repealed and replaced Regulation (EC) No 764/2008. The new regulation also extends the scope of the regulation to agricultural products under Par 1 of Article 38 TFEU.

Regulation (EU) 2019/515 lays down rules and procedures to guarantee the free movement of goods which are lawfully marketed in another Member State in full respect of the principle of mutual recognition, namely:
  • the procedure to be followed by a competent authority within assessment of goods (Article 5) and temporary suspension of the making available of those goods on the market (Article 6),
  • the obligatory elements of an administrative decision restricting or refusing access to the market (Paragraph 11, Article 5),
  • the possibility for economic operators to use a voluntary mutual recognition declaration to demonstrate that their product/goods have been lawfully marketed in another Member State (Article 4). The content of the mutual recognition declaration is set out in the Annex to the Regulation,
  • the involvement of SOLVIT (Article 8) in problem-solving procedure. SOLVIT is a network of informal solutions to problems faced by citizens or economic operators in exercising their rights in the European Union's internal market, set up upon the initiative of the European Commission. In the Slovak Republic, the tasks of the SOLVIT network are provided by the Government Office of the Slovak Republic.
  • Providing information through the Product Contact Points (Article 9).
More detailed information on mutual recognition within the EU is available on the European Commission's mutual recognition website.

Further information on the topic is available in Slovak language at the UNMS SR Website:

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